May from Reykjavik to Barcelona – CEN BII & GITB

On May 12-13, the CEN BII Workshop met in Reykjavik for the 10th Plenary meeting. On Monday 11th, there was an architecture meeting, and the plenaries and working sessions were scheduled for the 12th and 13th. All these meetings were hosted in Icepro. An excellent location near the bay of Reykjavik, with nice views and facilities. The weather was bright and sunny during the meeting days. For those who spend one extra day to visit the island, we had the chance to taste the real cold and rainy weather of the Icelandic spring.

On friday 22nd, the CEN GITB Workshop met in Barcelona. The excellent location was this time provided by KPMG. From the 21st stage, we had awesome views on the city and on the harbor. The GITB meeting was a working session to follow-up on the CWA and on the Proof of Concept Test Bed.


Architecture meeting

Eighteen people attended the architecture meeting on monday 11th. This was a working session where most of the time we were handling comment resolution for different parts of the Architecture CWA. The main topics that were handled:

  • Envelopes – The requirements of the CEN BII regarding envelopes cannot be fulfilled using SBDH, while they can be met with the OASIS BDXR BDE specification. SBDH does not allow for multiple payloads.
  • Conformance and customization. Edmund Gray presented the status of the Conformance registry guideline where the SDOs and end users will be able to publish their capabilities.
  • Joerg Ritcher made a presentation on a customization tool that is being developed by GEFEG.

In parallel with the architecture meeting, there was a Seminar with Icelandic interested parties where more than 80 people attended.

Gulfoss waterfall Iceland

Open Plenary

Stuart Feder opened the Plenary meeting and Jostein Fromyr made a presentation on the new Project Committee on electronic procurement that will be hosted in CEN. This new Project Committee will be known as PC 440. He also explained the work of the PC 434 on eInvoicing.

The fact is that a CWA is not a standard but an agreement between several stakeholders. Moving from a Workshop Agreement towards a Project Committee seems a natural path for the work done in CEN BII since 2007.

A PC has different rules, and the work is done through National Normalization Bodies of the European Member States.

PC440 will have its kick off meeting in Copenhagen on June 17th-18th.

Jostein explained the calendar of the PC 440 work, that will last until 2019, and the main contributors to the work:

  • the CEN BII profiles,
  • the EXEP
  • and the new Directives on electronic Procurement and electronic Invoicing.

After the presentation on PC440, Jaap van der Marel reviewed the minutes of the Istanbul meeting and the pending action items.

Kornelis Drifjhout made then a presentation on the eSENS project. He explained the pilot that has been done using the BII Pre-award profiles setting up all the required architecture to exchange Subscription to Procedure transactions between three different service providers.

Next step is to use the UBL standard as the base language for these transactions.

After that presentation, the groups split into pre-award and post-award to continue working on issue resolution.

Closing Plenary

The first item on the agenda for the closing plenary was the vote on providing the Syntax Binding to GS1 as part of the CEN BII CWA. In Essen, the group concluded there was a need for a syntax binding policy. In Stockholm, the Syntax binding policy was approved and during the Istanbul meeting the group decided to initiate a voting among the stakeholders in order to decide whether the work sponsored by GS1 should become part of the CEN BII deliverables or not.

12 participants voted. There were 5 positive votes and 7 negative. Therefore, the result was that the GS1 XML would not be part of the CWA, even if GS1 was encouraged to continue with the work and provide with the Syntax Binding even if not within the CWA.

Next point on the agenda was the possible continuation of the BII work as a new Workshop: The CEN BII4. After some discussion, the main idea was not to setup a new BII4 workshop as the task of defining the procurement profiles will be taken over by the new PC 440 and there could be some overlaps if both groups are maintained.

Funding two parallel and rather similar work streams was also a concern for the majority of the stakeholders.

The following item was the reports on the task teams. Kornelis reported on pre-award issue resolution made during the working sessions. He highlighted the difficulties on the work as the Notification Forms are not ready yet, nor is the ESPD (European Single Procurement Document). One of the major decisions in the pre-award was to work on a consistency check for all 29 profiles.

Veit Jahns made a presentation on the post-award and the catalogue task teams. He explained that the main task is to integrate the requirements from PC434 into the BII invoice profiles. There is also a need for amending some business terms in the Business Terms Vocabulary, which can cause impact on the work of other deliverables.

He also explained that there is a new profile called Order Agreement, and that there were more than 100 issues resolved.

For the Capacity Building task team, Carmen Ciciriello explained the conference to be organized in Madrid next Sep 15th and the big final conference to be done in Brussels by the end of the Workshop.

Next presentation was from Georg Birgisson on PC434. He explained the work streams and the status of the BII contributions. Georg said that the current issuers of BII Invoices would be able to maintain their systems as they are fully compatible with PC434. For the receivers they would need to understand some additional elements, but this should not be a major concern.

Kornelis made a final short presentation on the Expert Group on E-Procurement (EXEP) describing the group as a policy related group taking care of legal issues, governance and solutions. They will meet in Prague in June.

Closing the plenary, it was agreed to meet in Madrid during September, to have the final meeting in Brussels, and to add an extra meeting for reviewing pre-award deliverables during November.


There was a working session in Barcelona, hosted by KPMG. The editors met in order to work on the deliverables and the Proof Of Concept.

Suzanne Wigard from the European Commission made an initial presentation on the ISA Action 4.2.6 (Interoperability Solutions for Public Administrations).

The objective is to provide a testbed for interoperability testing against reference implementations of cross-border public services.

A Testbed is a platform consisting of several components to support testing reference implementations.

She explained that they used CIPA eDelivery (originally PEPPOL eDelivery – AS2 ) as a reference implementation for eDelivery, and now eSENS is using AS4. There is an implementation from eCODEX and CEF eDelivery has taken eCODEX and integrated with CIPA eDelivery to support both protocols, AS2 and AS4.

Suzanne’s team was able to download CEF eDelivery and setup a basic testbed against AS4 using the GITB Proof of Concept Testbed. This is a major achievement as it demonstrates the value of the work being done in GITB.

Suzanne claimed that the same type of work could be done in other DSI like eSignature.

Yildiray Kabak presented the current state-of-the-art of the Proof Of Concept and he described the next steps and scheduled deliveries.

Afterwards, the editors of the use cases explained the status of their work. Oriol Bausà explained the eProcurement use cases, Eric Poiseau explained the eHealth, and Georg Birgisson the ones related with manufacturing and logistics.

Roch Bertucat explained his work on the Test Registry and Repository that will be hosted within Joinup.

Christine Leigner reviewed the calendar for the delivery of the CWA and there was some discussion on how to support the Proof Of Concept implementation, as the work on the CWA will end as the Workshop finalizes.

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