38 By his question, the referring court essentially asks whether the framework agreement should be interpreted in the sense that it opposes a national regulation which, in the event of abuse of the use of fixed-term contracts or successive employment contracts by a public employer, prevents them from being converted into indeterminate contracts or employment relations, even when this transformation applies to contracts and employment relations with a private sector employer. 4 Article 2, paragraph 1, of the framework contract provides that it applies “to fixed-term workers who have an employment contract or employment relationship in each Member State within the meaning of law, collective agreements or tormented persons”. “Article 1 of directive 1999/70/EC and clauses 1 b) and 5 of the framework agreement) … in violation of the provisions of national law (which was in force before the directive was transposed) which distinguish between employment contracts signed with public authorities and contracts with private sector employers, excluding the former from the protection afforded by the establishment of an indeterminate employment relationship in the event of a violation of the binding rules applicable to successive fixed-term contracts? 43 As shown in Article 1, point b), of the framework agreement, it should also be recalled that it aims to “create a framework to prevent abuses resulting from the use of successive fixed-term contracts or employment relationships”. 23 The referring court recalls that the framework agreement does not identify any economic sector that may be excluded from its application, with the exception of certain training or labour relations within the meaning of Article 2, paragraph 2, of the framework agreement, which are however negligible for the litigation pending before the courts. Moreover, Law 422/2000, which authorized the government to transpose the 1999/70 Directive, does not limit its application to the authorities. Decree-Law 368/2001 does not contain such a restriction. Under Decree-Law 165/2001, it even expressly repealed “any incompatible legislation that is not explicitly mentioned in this decree-law.” Companies, in particular the contracting powers, may enter into framework agreements with one or more suppliers that impose the conditions applicable to each subsequent contract and provide for the selection and appointment of a contractor by referring directly to agreed terms or by organising a selection procedure that invites only the partners to the framework agreement to present specific trade proposals. [5] 3 As stipulated in Clause 1, the framework agreement aims to create, in the public sector, a set of central public procurement entities, whose aim is to create and manage framework agreements in accordance with EU public procurement directives [6] and which are available for use by designated public bodies. In the United Kingdom, for example, crown commercial service, municipal consortia such as Eastern Shires Purchasing Organisation (ESPO) and Yorkshire Purchasing Organisation (YPO) and consortia, in the areas of higher education and training: APUC (in Scotland), Crescent Purchasing Consortium (CPC), [7] London Universities Purchasing Consortium (LUPC), North Eastern Universities Purchasing Consortium (NEUPC), [8] North Western Universities Purchasing Consortium (NWUPC) [10] In the context of the negotiations, a framework agreement is an agreement between two parties, which recognizes that the parties have not reached final agreement on all issues relevant to the relations between them, but that they have agreed on enough issues to move relations forward, agreeing further details in the future.