The next generation of the Engineering and Construction Contract – the "NEC4" - is due to be released on 22 June 2017 according to the NEC Contracts Board. In fact, NEC4 consists of a whole suite of updated and new contracts.  

The contract has been around for nearly twenty-five years now and is heavily used in the infrastructure and engineering sectors in particular from minor works to major projects. The main feature of the contract as it has evolved is its flexibility and clarity and its focus on achieving best value through the core project team. The contract has been used most famously in Crossrail, the 2012 London Olympics, Heathrow Terminal 5 and the Channel Tunnel Rail Link. It is also the favoured contract of the public sector and is increasingly used in international projects as an alternative to FIDIC.  

The NEC4 aims to promote fair dealing, greater certainty and to help prevent litigation. As well as updating the current suite of contracts, there will be a brand new contract called the NEC4 Design Build Operate Contract (DBO) to allow clients to procure a more integrated whole-life delivery solution (i.e. to extend the contract beyond the construction phase to include the operational phase) and a new consultative Alliance Contract. The Alliance Contract will be published in consultation form and has been created to support clients wishing to fully integrate a multi-party delivery team for large complex projects.  It will contain an integrated risk and reward model.

Contact our team of Construction and Engineering Specialists for more information

We act for major public and private sector contractors, developers and employers across the UK on the procurement, construction and operation of major construction, engineering and infrastructure projects across the UK and abroad – most notably in the waste, highways, energy, healthcare, regeneration, housing and education sectors. 

If you require expert advice, assistance or representation in relation to any area of construction please contact the author Marie-Claire O'Hara, a construction disputes partner, or Andrew Tobin, Head of Construction & Engineering at Bevan Brittan. 



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