The Australian Commonwealth Procurement Rules form the core of Australia’s procurement framework. This framework includes the following RBC objectives – additional frameworks apply depending on the RBC objective:

The Sustainable Procurement Guide shows how to include sustainability considerations in all stages of the procurement process. One of the goals is to reduce adverse impacts of purchased products and services throughout their lifecycle.

The Australian Government’s Commonwealth Modern Slavery Act 2018 establishes an annual reporting requirement, requiring the federal government and businesses based or operating in Australia with annual consolidated revenue of AUD 100 million or more to prepare annual modern slavery statements. These annual statements detail how these entities assess and address modern slavery risks in their operations and supply chains.

Australian Government regulates the employee-employer relationship in Australia through their Fair Work Act 2009 and Fair Work Regulations 2009.

The Disability Discrimination Act 1992 regulates the protection and insertion of people with disabilities into society. The Australian Age Discrimination Act 2004 protects people from age discrimination in employment and provision of goods and services, among others. Australia also has the Sex Discrimination Act 1984 targeting unfair treatment based on their sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, intersex status, marital or relationship status, sexual harassment, pregnancy and breastfeeding.

The Australian Government adopted a number of policy and strategic frameworks that regulate accountability and transparency. These frameworks are also applicable when officials undertake procurement activities: the Public Service Act 1999, the Public Governance, Performance and Accountability Act 2013, the Criminal Code Act 1995 and the Corporations Act 2001.

  • Minority considerations

The Indigenous Procurement Policy aims to stimulate Indigenous entrepreneurship and business development, providing Indigenous Australians with more opportunities to participate in the economy by setting targets for purchasing from Indigenous enterprises.

  • Gender considerations

According to the Workplace Gender Equality Act 2012, employers that do not comply with the specification of the Act may not be eligible to compete for public contracts.

    • During the tender phase, Commonwealth procurement officials must consider, among others, the environmental sustainability of the proposed goods and services (such as energy efficiency, environmental impact and use of recycled products).

    • Australia has established a target to award 3% of its domestic contracts to indigenous enterprises each financial year, from 2019-2020.

  • Commonwealth procurement officials must obtain declarations from all tenderers confirming that they have not had a judicial decision against them and have not satisfied any resulting order.

  • Building contractors and building industry participants may be excluded from a tender or from being awarded if they do not comply with the Code for the Tendering and Performance of Building Work 2016.

  • To support the implementation of the Modern Slavery Act, as mentioned above, the Australian Government has developed a Toolkit of resources to assist government procurement officers in incorporating modern slavery risk mitigation at all stages of a procurement process. The Toolkit includes a suite of resources designed to assess, address and mitigate risks of modern slavery in procurement. These include a supplier questionnaire, tender guidance, contract clauses, e-learning modules and a risk screening tool. The Toolkit is intended to be used within existing Commonwealth procurement frameworks.

  • BuyAbility Procurement is a contract management service that assists both the Australian Government and private business to procure products and services from Disability Enterprises for specific contracts and projects. This service is designed to increase employment opportunities for people with disabilities through the promotion, connection and management of socially responsible procurement opportunities for Australian Disability Enterprises.

  • Supplier Pay On-Time or Pay Interest Policy is a policy that requires entities to make all payments to a supplier under a certain threshold within the maximum payment terms. The objective of this policy is to facilitate timely payment to suppliers, assist with their cash flow, and reduce the cost of supplying to the Commonwealth.

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