Spending on Aboriginal procurement increases

The NSW government is reporting an 89 per cent increase in its direct spend with Aboriginal businesses as a result of new procurement targets introduced this year.

Damien Tudehope

It says it spent more than $173 million directly with Aboriginal businesses in the last financial year, almost double the $92 million spent in 2019-20.

Minister for Finance and Small Business Damien Tudehope says the figures coincide with the introduction of the new Aboriginal Procurement Policy (APP) in January, which established spending targets for government clusters.

The government awarded 126 contracts to Aboriginal businesses in the six months to June and exceeded spending targets by more than $40 million, Mr Tudehope says.

“While the NSW government had a target to spend $59.33 million directly with Aboriginal businesses in the six months to 30 June 2021, it spent $100.51 million with Aboriginal businesses during this period,” he said.

“The goods and services contracts target for the same period was 102 contracts and this was exceeded, with NSW government awarding 126 contracts to Aboriginal businesses.”

 Close to 4000 FTE employment opportunities for Aboriginal people have been supported since 2018.

“We want to increase Aboriginal participation through employment opportunities and give Aboriginal businesses the opportunity to grow and thrive across the state while working on Government projects,” Mr Tudehope said.

Minister for Aboriginal Affairs Don Harwin said the NSW government would continue to encourage procurement opportunities for Aboriginal Businesses in keeping with the Closing the Gap initiative.

“We know these businesses employ Aboriginal people and by selecting them as suppliers, the NSW Government is directly supporting the employment of Aboriginal people and supporting families and communities across NSW.”

The Aboriginal Procurement Policy includes:

  • A target of 3 per cent of goods and services contracts for each NSW Government cluster with Aboriginal businesses per financial year
  • A 1 per cent target for each NSW Government cluster of ‘addressable spend’ directly with Aboriginal businesses on goods, services and construction per financial year; and
  • A requirement for suppliers to direct 1.5 per cent of the project value to support Aboriginal participation – such as direct employment, sub-contracting with Aboriginal businesses or towards the cost of education or training for Aboriginal employees – on contracts over $7.5 million

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