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Basic Ordering Agreement Programme


The NCI Agency BOA Programme provides an accelerated and cost-effective procurement method for commercial off-the-shelf (COTS) products and services. 

A BOA is a two-stage contracting procedure. First, the NCI Agency and the company establish a framework contract, specifying all basic contract provisions. This stage also includes the signing of a preferred-customer declaration. Potential suppliers also indicate a range of goods and services against which retail quantities can be ordered. Before signing a BOA, national authorities must issue a Declaration of Eligibility for the company.

Stage 2 takes place when there is an actual BOA competition. At this point the contracting officer matches companies' offered categories to the requirements, and requests for quote (RFQs) are sent out to qualified companies.

Please note that the BOA program is open only to companies registered in a NATO member state. For more information refer to the BOA Q&A.

If you are interested in signing a BOA, please fill out the BOA application, and email it to BOA@ncia.nato.int

Q & A


What is a Basic Ordering Agreement (BOA)?

BOAs are one of the two NCI Agency procurement methods. For more information visit our Basic Ordering Agreements (BOA) page.

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What is the basic process of a BOA?

The majority of BOA procurements are done via competitions. They are announced on the Agency’s Business Opportunities and are only open to suppliers with an active BOA.

The BOA process involves 2 stages:

Stage 1 is establishing an agreement with all basic contract provisions and prices or a definitive pricing methodology. Individual orders for retail quantities may then be placed against this agreement by local offices for local delivery.

Stage 2 is when there is a BOA competition. We filter vendors to match the requirements to the offered categories, and we then send a Request for Quotation (RFQ) to vendors that provide the required products/services.

BOA suppliers not initially selected may contact the NCI Agency and request inclusion in any bidders list of interest.

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What products are included?

BOAs are used to procure a wide range of products and services. You can review our list of categories here.

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What are the main advantages of a BOA?

There are many advantages both for NATO and for the companies participating in the BOA Programme. The BOA implements a standardised contract format and contract terms and conditions for all suppliers throughout NATO Nations:

  • All essential contract terms are already determined by professional contracting staff;
  • Avoids unnecessary and repeated negotiation by local purchasers (often leading to variable results);
  • May operate irrespective of the source of authorized funds
  • Automated NATO access to information from hundreds of suppliers on the latest IT products, services and prices, and company points of contact;
  • Most favoured customer pricing and terms and conditions;
  • Considerable reduction on commercial prices due to potential of large aggregate quantities;
  • Orders can be placed by local offices at anytime during validity of the BOA;
  • Although no total or minimum quantities may be agreed when the BOA is established, suppliers have access to a wider market with the advantage of a central negotiation and reference point in the NCI Agency;
  • Pricing and technical information updated regularly;
  • Faster and simpler processing of competitive procurements;

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Do our staff need security clearances?

Security clearances are not required to obtain a BOA but they may be required for certain projects.

These security requirements will be specified in the particular bidding instructions.

All questions regarding security clearances need to be addressed to the Ministry of Internal Affairs of the country of incorporation or to the National Delegation at NATO for the foreign nationals concerned.

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Is having a BOA a justification for receiving a company security clearance from national authorities?

Normally national security authorities require proof of doing business with NATO in order to issue a company security clearance. Having a BOA in place is not sufficient proof for these purposes. Should your company win a BOA competition, that would constitute "Business with NATO."

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What if our prices for services are high in comparison with that of other companies and cannot be reduced?

With respect to service type agreements where Task Orders are involved there are, of course, a number of variables to consider. Total price is just one factor. Rates, levels of expertise, availability, support and maintenance, and travel requirements may all be a factor.

The rates used as part of the BOA, however, set a baseline and provide information to enable potential purchasers to price, and order if necessary, individual levels of expertise. For example, if a purchaser requires 10 days of engineering support he can readily identify potential sources, price and order this. Whereas price is important and forms a critical part of the BOA, it is not necessarily the only criteria to be used.

The NCI Agency understands that prices quoted in the BOA are indicative only. Hence, prior to any procurement via BOA, the NCI Agency will contact the potential supplier directly and request a firm price quotation for each specific requirement.


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Who can use BOAs?

Though primarily used as a procurement method by the NCI Agency, any NATO Body, governmental agencies (including military forces) of any of the NATO Member Nations, and, on a case by case basis, the NATO Partnership for Peace (PfP) Nations are eligible users of BOAs.

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Which of the eligible purchasers are exempt from VAT?

NATO Bodies are exempt from paying VAT. Enlargement and PfP Governmental Authorities as well as NATO National Authorities may also be exempt if purchasing for a NATO project with a NATO authorised budget or, in some cases, when these authorities have been authorised by NATO to purchase under NATO.

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Would it be possible for us to include another company's products, for which we are a vendor, in our BOA?

Yes, other company’s products and services can be included in your BOA.

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We cannot provide warranty, maintenance and support NATO-wide. Is that a problem?

Subject to the requirement and/or project concerned, this may be a limitation for your company to be "compliant" in certain bids. However, alternative methods of warranty, maintenance and support are available such as by using subcontractors, immediate replacement warranty/maintenance, etc., depending on the type of products involved.

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Can a company, established a BOA, still participate in ICBs? How does that company then get included in the ICB process?

Yes. ICB and BOA competitions have separate procedures – one does not interfere with the other. Regardless of whether a company has a Declaration of Eligibility for establishing a BOA, separate Declarations must be issued for each ICB. For more information visit the NCI Agency Procurement Methods section of the website, and our presentation on "Common Bidding Mistakes'.

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Will information on potential procurements be available to a company that has established a BOA?

Yes, from various sources including the Delegations, NATO Military Commands, NATO Agencies, etc. depending on the project and/or budget involved. The NCI Agency also maintains a Business Opportunities section of the website, and a Twitter account (@NCIAAcquisition) for this purpose.

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Can products be added after a BOA has been signed?

Products and services as well as price lists can always be added to the BOA.

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How is BOA comparison done when it concerns consultancy services?

NCI Agency procures consultancy services through support services contracts, as well as BOAs. The evaluation method depends on the particular requirement or project. It ranges from a simple comparison of rates based upon "lowest compliant" to detailed statements of work where the total price for completion is evaluated. In every case the criteria for evaluation will be specified in the bidding documents.

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In which currency do we publish our prices?

Prices can be published in any of the NATO Members’ currencies including multiple currencies if appropriate.

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What is the next step after our company has digested all the available information and decides to solicit a BOA?

If you are interested in signing a BOA with the NCI Agency, please fill out the BOA Application following the instructions, and email it to BOA@ncia.nato.int.

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