Launching is the milestone that triggers the tender process. Tender documents are published through standard government processes, often in the official government bulletin or journal, on a centralized procurement website, or in regional or national newspapers.
Sometimes, in the case of procurement by sub-national governments, a tender notice is also published in the central government bulletin. In the EU member states, a public tender also needs to be made public in the EU Official Journal (OJEU).
In some countries, prospective bidders must register or pay a fee in order to receive the RFP.
In some jurisdictions (for example, the EU), the tender must be pre-announced a certain number of days in advance of when the actual tender process starts and the RFP is published. That pre-announcement is intended to ensure that as many companies as possible are aware of the project. It describes the main characteristics of the project and the tender: tender method, type of contract, the contract value, and so on.
These standard government processes are often contained in general procurement rules. However, this will not necessarily ensure that the project comes to the attention of the full field of potential bidders.
Regardless of the specific process required to formally launch the tender process, the procuring authority should implement a pre-launch strategy that ensures potential bidders are aware of the project, as well as the planned timing of the tender process. This enables bidders to ready themselves for the launch and properly resource their bidding teams. When the procuring authority has not conducted a structured testing and marketing process during the Structuring Phase (see chapter 5.6.), it would be necessary for the procuring authority to conduct at least a pre-bid information meeting or presentation prior to the release of the invitation to tender, sharing information in relation to the tender process and the project.
Box 6.3 sets out some of the communication channels that may be included as part of a prelaunch of the PPP project.
 Contract value is usually the volume of capital expenditures (Capex) estimated by the procuring authority, or sometimes refers to the total amount of payments to be made by the procuring authority if the bid equals the ceiling on payments.