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Mise à jour : 25/01/2012 10:36

Ethical charter

WARNING : this English version of the Ethical Charter is provided solely for convenience purposes. However, the French Version, which can be accessed on the home page of the IXARM site, is the sole binding

The "IXARM" site is a professional site published free of charge by the French Ministry of Defence (MINDEF) for the defence community. The "IXARM" site is :

-  On the one hand devoted to MINDEF contracts for weapons, munitions and war equipment, (it being reminded that the other MINDEF contracts can be reached through the "achats.defense.gouv.fr" site). This first part can be reached using "Working with Defence" & "Contracts and opportunities" tabs and "Defence public market place" link available on each portal page (left column), and is subject to the conditions of use are specified under part A hereunder.

-  On the other hand intended to promote interchanges among players in the Defence community and can be reached using “Home page" and "The Armament sector" tab. This second part of the “IXARM” site on information exchanges includes spaces that can be accessed by any visitor and others that are reserved for armament manufacturers who are site members under the conditions described in section B.3.1 below. Conditions of use of this second part of the “IXARM” site are specified in part B below.

PART A

The purpose of this present Charter is to describe (I) the interchange procedures on the part of the IXARM site dealing with weapons, munitions and war equipment (designated Contracts in the present part A of this document) ("Working with Defence" & "Contracts and opportunities" tabs and "Defence public market place" link) (A.I), and more especially the dematerialised solicitation procedures (A.II).

In part A of the present document, « IXARM » site will designate exclusively parts of this site reached with "Working with Defence" & "Contracts and opportunities" tabs and "Defence public market place" link .

A.I. INTERCHANGES ON THE MINDEF CONTRACTS

A.1.1. IXARM site functions reserved for Contracts

The IXARM site includes two categories of functional capacities for Contracts.

A. 1.1.1. Information concerning MINDEF Contracts

The IXARM site allows any company which wishes so to access a certain amount of information concerning MINDEF Contracts.

This information concerns :

-  the general framework, especially the regulatory framework, of MINDEF Contracts ("Working with Defence" tab) ;

-  the MINDEF procurement projects. Companies can express their interest in these procurement plans or propose others that might interest the MINDEF ("Specific procedures" section accessible in the "Contracts and opportunities" tab). The part of the IXARM site where the companies transmit their data is not subject to any security measure aimed to identify the company or preserving the data.

-  planned or current MINDEF Contracts with industrial prime contractors in a monopolistic situation to which other companies may apply as subcontractors ("Procurement plans" section accessible within the "Contracts and opportunities" tab). Information concerning procurement plans is diffused under the responsibility of the industrial prime contractors concerned.

For the MINDEF planned and current Contracts, companies may also access the public notices, solicitation advertises and/or bidding documents, under conditions that vary depending on the type of procedure. These are described below (see section A.II).

Companies may access various services (search engine, notification and other) to selectively obtain specific types of Contract data (such as invitation to tender or call for skills notice). The MINDEF tries to provide reliable services but cannot guarantee that the results will be exhaustive. The results depend very much on how the company uses these services.

The information is made available to companies for use for MINDEF Contracts in the framework of their own professional use. As a consequence they may download, reproduce, on paper or electronic medium, represent and/or store such information for their own purposes and use, provided however that they always indicate the origin thereof. Visitors may under no circumstances whatsoever disseminate any substantial part of the information found on the IXARM site on any medium or by any process whatsoever, whether for a price or free of charge.

A.1.1.2. Dematerialisation of MINDEF Contract solicitation procedures

The IXARM site will allow the MINDEF to conduct fully electronic solicitation procedures in conformity with the terms of Article 56 of the Government contract code (“Code des Marchés Publics” hereinafter designated “CMP”) and the applicable executive orders.

Unless excluded by the MINDEF from the electronic process in the public notice or the solicitation letter (for negotiated procedures without publication), all candidates who so desire may submit a tender in the MINDEF solicitation procedures by electronic way. Dated to January 1st 2005, MINDEF will be not allowed to refused electronic bidding.

Consequently, candidates may :

-  access the MINDEF documents (solicitation advertise, solicitation letter, specifications and additional documents and information) and/or send their candidature and tender either by electronic way or on hard copy or electronic medium, under the conditions described in section A.II below ;

-  choose freely among the various transmission channels for receiving the documents from the MINDEF and for sending candidatures and tenders to the MINDEF.

A.1.2. Information and documents made available by the MINDEF

The MINDEF does its best to post reliable and up-to-date information on the IXARM site.

Electronic documents sent to candidates by the MINDEF and signed electronically will have the same value as that of any of the same documents sent to other candidates by the MINDEF on material medium (paper or floppy disk).

The documents electronically transmitted by the MINDEF will not contain any classified (Confidential or Secret) information. Such information is accessible only on material (paper or floppy disk) medium.

Candidates are to use the information and documents made available by the MINDEF solely for the requirements of MINDEF Contracts. Notably, they are to observe strictest confidentiality concerning bidding documents and any additional documents and information to which they might have access after being allowed to present a tender, in procedures other than the open procedure.

If any difficulty appears in accessing information, companies or candidates must contact the relevant MINDEF purchasing department which generates the information, and not the IXARM site administrator.

A.1.3. Information and documents provided by companies

A.1.3.1. Conditions for supplying documents and information to the MINDEF

In addition to the required conditions described in section A.II below when participating in a dematerialised solicitation procedure, companies supplying documents and/or information to the MINDEF agree that :

-  Any document or information sent shall be accompanied by the electronic address of a company representative with whom the MINDEF may correspond if necessary ;

-  These documents shall include no Classified information, and that such information is to be transmitted to the MINDEF solely on material (paper or floppy disk) medium. It is recalled that violations of defence secrecy is subject to penal sanction ;

-  These documents or information are to be reliable and, notably, include no erroneous information or computer viruses ;

-  These documents or information are in conformity with laws and regulations in force and notably do not violate the rights of third parties, cannot violate the principle of free competition, especially as they relate to government contracts.

Any information or documents that do not comply with the above conditions may be dismissed by the MINDEF.

If any difficulty appears in forwarding information or documents, companies or candidates must contact the relevant MINDEF procurement department which is the addressee, and not the IXARM site administrator.

A.1.3.2. Personal identification data collected by the MINDEF

Companies and candidates are informed that the MINDEF collects personal data within the meaning of French law no. 78-17 of 6 January 1978 concerning “computer science, files, and freedoms”(i.e. data protection act) on the IXARM site and uses some of this information to generate a candidates database for the MINDEF procurement departments.

As a consequence :

-  The IXARM site and the candidate database have been given authorisations by regulatory acts, after opinion from the CNIL as reference n° 752853 ( order dated of September 17th 2001 and published in Official Journal (J.O) dated of 9th October 2001 - page 15859).

-  Companies and candidates are to make sure that the personal data is transmitted by the concerned natural persons having a full understanding of the context , or is transmitted with their consent.

-  All natural persons whose identity is transmitted to the MINDEF on the IXARM site have a right to access, rectify or delete the data concerning them, in conformity with the terms of articles 34 to 40 of the law herein above referenced. This right may be exercised with the MINDEF department specified on the "Legal notice" section that can be accessed on each page of the IXARM site.

A.II. DEMATERIALISED SOLICITATION PROCEDURES PROCESS

The dematerialised solicitation procedures for MINDEF Contracts will proceed under the following conditions, in accordance with the terms of Article 56 of the CMP and the applicable executive orders. MINDEF’ Contracts proceeded under dematerialised solicitation procedures will be hereinafter designated “Dematerialised Contracts”. These dematerialised solicitation procedures will be held in the "Dematerialised solicitation room” (“salle d’acquisitions dématérialisées” or “SACD”) in the IXARM site "Marketplace", which can be accessed by the "Defence public market place" link available on each portal page (left column).

A.2.1. Publication

A.2.1.1. Notices published on the IXARM site

For procedures with publication (open or restricted procedures and negotiated procedures) of all the MINDEF Contracts, the official notices (prior information notices, invitation to tender, corrigenda and award or not pursued or fruitless notices, the latter three being described in section A.2.5 below) are accessible to all companies on the IXARM site after publication in a legal announcements newspaper and/or the French Official Government Contract Bulletin (“Bulletin Officiel des Annonces de Marchés Publics” or “BOAMP”) and, when necessary, the Official Journal of the European Union (“Journal Officiel l’Union Européenne” or “JOUE”). The sole official version of these official notices shall be that published in the legal announcement newspaper and/or if the need arises the French Official Government Contract Bulletin (“BOAMP”) or the Official Journal of the European Union (“JOUE”). The MINDEF will attempt to ensure that official notices are advertised exhaustively on the IXARM site, but companies are forewarned that this may be delayed in cases of technical transmission problems with the official journals.

Non official notices (which mean not published in in the legal announcement newspaper and/or if the need arises the French Official Government Contract Bulletin - “BOAMP” or the Official Journal of the European Union - “JOUE”) could be published on "ixarm.com " portal.

This will concern :

-  invitations to tender for adapted procedures or without publication procedures,

-  solicitation notices in progress allowed for possible sub-contractors to contact solicitation retained candidates,

-  information notes intended to candidates.

A.2.1.2. Published notice access procedures

Official and non-official notices with free access can be consulted using a search engine accessible to all companies.

A.2.1.3. Access to solicitation advertise

The invitations to tender for Dematerialised Contract and all non-official notices allow to download the solicitation advertise of the concerned Dematerialised Contract.

A.2.2. Access to company bidding document (“Dossier de Consultation des Entreprises” hereinafter designated “DCE”)

Candidates may either request remittance of DCE on a material (paper or floppy disk) medium, from the MINDEF department indicated in, depending on the applicable procedure, the invitations to tender, of the solicitation advertise or the solicitation letter, or to access to the DCE by electronic way.

Candidates who want to access the DCE by electronic shall comply with the following procedures :

-  In an open procedure : download the DCE in the dematerialised solicitation room after indicating the company name, the name of the physical person who downloads, and that person’s e-mail address.

-  In any procedure other than an open procedures : download the DCE on the secured space in the dematerialised solicitation room after supplying the identification elements (identifier and password) so the MINDEF can check the candidate’s right to access the DCE.

The download will be recorded on the DCE register of downloads held by the MINDEF.

If the MINDEF transmits any changes to or further information in the DCE, it will do so by the same process as the candidate used to get the DCE.

A.2.3 Submission of candidate’s candidatures and bids

If so provided for in the invitation to tender or solicitation letter, depending on the applicable procedure, the candidates may transmit their candidature and/or tender to the MINDEF :

-  either on physical medium, paper or, if the solicitation advertise so allows, on floppy disk

-  or by electronic way.

Any candidates who want to transmit their bid (candidature and/or tender) by electronic way must comply with the following conditions and formalities :

A.2.3.1 Conditions precedent to the submission of an electronic candidatures and bids

Before sending anything, the candidates must, at their own expense :

-  indicate to the MINDEF an approved representative to represent the candidate in electronic way exchanges all through the solicitation procedure ;

-  procure a digital certificate from a certification service provider approved by the MINDEF ;

-  have access to the Internet, and have an e-mail address.

The representative(s), the digital certificate and the e-mail address are the elements used to identify each candidate, and are needed for submitting any bid by e-mail.

For grouped candidacies, the appointed company or candidate will be in charge of transmitting documents in the group’s name and, for that purpose shall comply with the conditions described in this section.

A.2.3.2 Formalities common to all procedures

A.2.3.2.1 Submission formalities for candidatures and bids

The applications including the candidate’s candidature and/or tender are to be sent to the MINDEF by electronic bidding with the identification elements mentioned in section A.2.3.1 above.

Candidates will receive a dated acknowledgement of receipt for each mail sent, indicating the date of receipt by the MINDEF.

The candidates agree not to submit their candidature or tender both by electronic way and hard medium (paper or floppy disk). If they do, the first candidature or tender submitted to the MINDEF will be the one considered, save where the MINDEF has notified a virus detection as specified under section A.2.4.1 below.

Candidatures and/or tenders received by the MINDEF outside the time indicated in the invitation to tender or the solicitation letter will be destroyed without being opened and the candidates concerned will be informed accordingly.

A.2.3.2.2 Complementary tender submission formalities

In addition to complying with the formalities described in section A.2.3.2 above, the candidates will transmit their tender in two phases. First, they are to send their digital signature. The date at which the MINDEF receives this is taken as the sure date of receipt of the tender. Then the tender itself is sent.

The invitation to tender or the solicitation letter, depending on the procedure, will indicate the maximum time that may elapse between the MINDEF receipt electronic hash of the bid and receipt of the tender itself. This time may not exceed 24 hours.

A.2.3.3 Specific formalities for the procedures

A.2.3.3.1 Open procedures

Candidates are to submit their bid with for one part their candidature and for an another part tender within the time indicated in the invitation to tender.

A.2.3.3.2 Procedures other than open procedure

-  Submission of candidatures. The candidates are to submit their candidature within the time stipulated in the invitation to tender.

-  Information of candidates about their candidature. The MINDEF informs those candidates who are refused and those who are accepted for presenting a tender. The latter receive a solicitation letter at the same time. This solicitation letter will mainly stipulate the DCE access formalities and the deadline and address for submitting the tenders.

-  Submission of tenders by candidates allowed to present a tender. The candidates are to submit their tender under the conditions stipulated in the solicitation letter.

A.2.4 Examination of candidates’ bids

The bids sent to the MINDEF by electronic way will undergo the following processing.

A.2.4.1 Preliminary checks

The candidatures and tenders that candidates submit by electronic way will undergo the following checks before being opened :

-  Detection of computer viruses by the antivirus. Any tenders or candidatures containing a computer virus will be archived for security (quarantined) without being read and will be considered to have never been received. The candidates will be informed thereof and, if the deadline for submission of candidatures and tenders so allows, may submit a new candidature or tender by electronic way or on hard medium (paper or floppy disk, if the consultation rules provide for this).

-  Check of Author’s identity by means of the digital certificate described in section A.2.3.1 above.

-  Check of bid integrity by the digital signature.

A.2.4.2 Conservation of bids

The MINDEF will save all candidatures and tenders that candidates validly submit by electronic way under conditions that will guarantee their integrity and confidentiality.

For that purpose, the MINDEF will after having performed the checks described in section A.2.4.1 above generate an encryption key for each tender. The encrypted tenders and corresponding keys will be stored in separate secure memory spaces until the tender commission examines the tenders.

A.2.4.3 Examination of candidatures

Tenders in respect to candidatures which have been retained (in open procedure), and all receivable tenders in the other procedures, will be opened by the encryption key mentioned in section A.2.4.2 above.

Any request for more precise or further information concerning the tender content will be addressed by electronic way to the concerned candidate.

In the negotiations conducted during negotiated procedures, the MINDEF prefers to use electronic way but does not exclude communications on hard medium if the candidate so requests.

A.2.4.4 Processing of bids after solicitation

Bids for non-receivable tenders will be destroyed without having been read, and the candidates concerned will be informed of this with the content of the return receipt.

Caution : causes of non-receivability of a tender is :

-  1/ timeout (in this case it is mentioned in the return receipt),

-  2/ several bids deposit (in this case several return receipts are sent),

-  3/ viruse found.

The non-receivability is implicit. There is no specific message sents by "Dematerialised solicitation room" (SACD) toward the company. The aim is that SACD doesn’t take the place of the public person (PRM) who is the only one to judge the opportunity of bid receipt. The SACD is just in charge to give some informations (to the company and to the "public person") allowing to deduct if the bid is receivable or not.

Bids for tenders that are not retained will be archived under such conditions that their confidentiality will be preserved.

A.2.5 End of solicitation

The end of the solicitation will be announced in an official publication (notice of award or not pursued or fruitless solicitation notices) published in the "Dematerialized solicitation room", available through the IXARM site, as soon as it is published in a official announcement journal.

PART B

The purpose of this part of the present Charter is to describe the general conditions for using the « IXARM » site environment interchange spaces ("Home page" and "The armament sector" tabs) (B.I), then those applicable to these same spaces for visitors (B.II) and to IXARM site members (B.III).

In part B of this document, « IXARM » site will design exclusively parts of this site reached with "Home page" and "The armament sector" tabs

B.I. GENERAL TERMS AND CONDITIONS

The following general terms and conditions are applicable to IXARM site members and visitors.

B.1.1. For manufacturer pages, product pages and services pages, the information is disseminated on the IXARM site under the responsibility of the members under the conditions described in section B.3.2 below, and other information is disseminated under the responsibility of the Defence ministry. This information is disseminated in French and/or English.

B.1.2. The French Ministry of Defence (MINDEF) attempts to distribute accurate information and supply reliable services. However, visitors and members use the information and services accessible on the IXARM site under their own full responsibility ; under no circumstances the MINDEF or its employees are responsible for any damage whatsoever they may suffer as a result of using the information or services of the IXARM site.

B.1.3. The MINDEF attempts to allow use of the IXARM site without malfunction or security problems, but cannot guarantee that malfunctions or security incidents will not occur. As a consequence, it is recommended that visitors and members take all the ordinary security measures when using the Internet, notably as concerns protection against computer viruses.

B.1.4. Hypertext links to sites other than IXARM are established under the responsibility of the members under the conditions described in section B.3.2 or under the MINDEF responsibility. The MINDEF attempts to establish links to sites distributing licit, reliable content. However, as these sites are under the control of third parties, the MINDEF or its employees cannot be held responsible for the content they distribute.

B.1.5. Visitors and members agree to inform the IXARM site administrator (address given on home page) immediately of any information that seems illicit to them, on the IXARM site or on sites to which a hypertext link has been established.

B.1.6. The MINDEF reserves the right to delete and/or modify all or part of the services and/or functional capacities of the IXARM site. Also, the MINDEF may need to interrupt the distribution of information or the establishment of hypertext links, notably under the conditions described in section B.3.2.5 below.

B.1.7. This Charter is governed by under French law, and any disputes relating thereto will be submitted to administrative type courts.

B.II. CONDITIONS APPLICABLE TO IXARM SITE VISITORS

B.2.1. Any visitor consulting the IXARM site is subject to the conditions of this Charter (sections B.I and B.II) and must first be aware of these conditions. Any visitor who wishes to become a member must refer to the conditions of section B.III.

B.2.2. Visitors have access to information and services open to everyone, while other information is reserved for members. As a consequence, visitors may be refused access to certain services and/or information during their consultation.

B.2.3. Whatever its form (image, text or other), information is made available to visitors for their own professional use. As a consequence, , they may download, reproduce on paper or electronic medium, represent and/or store such information for their own purposes and use, provided however that they always indicate the origin thereof. Visitors may under no circumstances whatsoever disseminate any substantial part of the information found on the IXARM site on any medium or by any process whatsoever, whether for a price or free of charge.

B.2.4. The information that visitors can access on the IXARM site may be protected by intellectual property right, in which case the visitors agree to use this information without infringement of these intellectual property rights, and notably not to modify this information in any way whatsoever while performing the acts authorised and described in section B.2.3 above.

B.III. CONDITIONS APPLICABLE TO IXARM SITE MEMBERS

B.3.1. Registration on the IXARM site

B.3.1.1. IXARM site members are any manufacturers who might provide products or services for armament and who have their headquarters in one of the countries of the European Union or notably of the European zone.

Members must exercise their activity in conformity with their country’s State regulations and standing international treaties. The MINDEF reserves the optionto refuse registration or deregister any manufacturer who might adversely impact the credibility of the IXARM site, notably for reasons of actual or suspected illicit activities.

B.3.1.2. Any armament manufacturer, as defined above, who wishes to become a member of the IXARM site must

-  designate an administrator, a natural person being duly empowered to represent him ;

-  choose and indicate an user name (login) and a password ;

-  read the present Charter (sections B.I and B.III) governing relations between the MINDEF and the members.

By sending the online registration application form to the MINDEF, the manufacturer indicates his acceptance of the terms and conditions of this present Charter (part B).

After examining the manufacturer’s registration application form, the MINDEF will send the manufacturer an e-mail granting or refusing IXARM site membership status.

B.3.1.3. Any employee of an IXARM site member may register under the responsibility of the administrator, who must validate the user name(login) and password chosen by the employee and make sure he(she) knows the terms and conditions of this Charter (part B).

The administrator may decide to delegate all or part of his functions on the IXARM site to registered employees .

B.3.1.4. The administrator and employee(s) are responsible for their user name (login) and password, which they must keep strictly confidential. If these are lost or divulged, they shall immediately inform the IXARM site administrator in order to record a new user name (login) and/or password. The MINDEF or its employees may under no circumstances be held responsible for the damages arising from the loss or disclosure of an user name (login) or a password by an administrator or an employee.

B.3.2. Use of the IXARM site

B.3.2.1. Members have access to all information and services accessible to visitors and to information and services reserved for members, which are notably the "community tools" used to establish relations among members (business cards, directory, classified ads and other).

B.3.2.2. Members have the possibility of generating a "manufacturer page" describing themselves, for dissemination on the IXARM site, and one or more product or service pages describing their products and/or services.

These pages are constructed according to a model established by the MINDEF, in French and/or English, and may include text, images, sound and other elements.

These pages are to be sent to the IXARM site administrator who will decide whether or not to put them online on the IXARM site.

A member’s administrator may make changes in the pages concerning the member at any time. Any changed page is to be sent tothe IXARM site administrator, who will decide whether or not to put it online on the IXARM site.

Before sending any pages to the IXARM site administrator, members are to make sure that it includes no computer virus or any other mechanism that might harm hardware, files or data belonging to the MINDEF, visitors or members.

B.3.2.3. Members agree to distribute lawful and accurate information, which can be rightfully disseminated on the IXARM site, notably on their pages. This information must be updated regularly, and at least every six months.

Members agree not to disseminate any classified information (Confidential or Secret). It is recalled that violation of national defence secrets aresubject to penal sanctions.

Members are informed that their pages are accessible to any visitor, who can use them under the conditions described in section B.II above. The MINDEF or its employees are not responsible for a visitor’s use of the information given on the members’ pages, whether or not such use is in conformity with the conditions of this Charter.

B.3.2.4. Members may establish a hypertext link from the pages to their own Internet site. Members warrant that the information and/or services of their site and of the sites to which it is linked are lawful.

B.3.2.5. The MINDEF may interrupt the distribution of pages or other information from members, or delete an hypertext link to a member’s site, if these pages, information or links are detrimental to the image of the MINDEF or are unlawful, especially where they infringe third party’s rights or are contrary to the public order.

The MINDEF also reserves the right to deregister from the IXARM site any member who refuses to conform to the conditions of this Charter.

B.3.2.6. When registering on the IXARM site, members are to indicate whether or not they accept that the information they transmit concerning themselves be inserted in the membership directory. Access to this directory is reserved to members. It allows members mainly to extract "business cards" with a set of data concerning each member.

This directory includes personal data within the meaning of French law no. 78-17 of 6 January 1978 concerning computer science, files, and freedoms. As a consequence :

-  This directory is declared to the CNIL as reference n° 752853 (order dated of September 17th 2001 and published in Official Journal (J.O) dated of 9th October 2001 - page 15859) ;

-  Each member’s administrator is to make sure that the personal data is transmitted by the concerned natural persons having a full understanding of the context , or with their consent ;

-  All natural persons whose identity is transmitted to the MINDEF on the IXARM site have a right to access, rectify or delete their personal data , in conformity with the terms of articles 34 to 40 of the herein above referenced law. This right may be exercised with the MINDEF department indicated on the "Legal notices" section that can be accessed on each page of the IXARM site.

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