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Tuesday, 22 May 2001
Page: 26758


Mr Sidebottom asked the Minister representing the Minister for Finance and Administration, upon notice, on 1 March 2001:

(1) Is the Minister's Department, or are Agencies within the Portfolio, large purchasers or consumers of office papers.

(2) How are Commonwealth procurement guidelines being adhered to by the Minister's Department and Agencies with the Portfolio.

(3) What methodology or weighting criteria does the Minister's Department and Agencies use to determine the importance of the core principles which underpin the procurement guidelines, namely (a) value for money, (b) open and effective competition, (c) ethics and fair dealing, (d) accountability and reporting, (e) national competitiveness and industry development and (f) support for other Commonwealth policies.

(4) What weighting criteria are used to implement the mandatory provisions in the guidelines which state that agencies must be able to demonstrate that Australia New Zealand (ANZ) suppliers have had a fair opportunity to compete.

(5) In inviting suppliers to tender for the provision of goods, are suppliers advised that they must offer ANZ goods.

(6) If the Minister's Department or Agencies within the Portfolio do not have weighting criteria for determining the principles, will the Minister take steps to ensure that they provide and appropriate means to demonstrate their compliance with Commonwealth procurement policy.


Mr Costello (Treasurer) —The answer to the honourable member's question is as follows:

(1) The Portfolio consumes office paper. Consumption fluctuates throughout the year and is dependant upon timing and the particular activities being undertaken.

(2) All procurement within my Portfolio is carried out in accordance with both the Commonwealth Procurement Guidelines: Core Policies and Principles 1998 and the Financial Management and Accountability Act 1997. As advised in the 1999-2000 DOFA Annual Report, to enhance compliance of the Commonwealth Procurement Guidelines, an explanation of their importance in providing fundamental directions for government procurement was included in DOFA's Chief Executive Instructions.

(3) In accordance with the Commonwealth Procurement Guidelines: Core Policies and Principles 1998, the Portfolio follows the core principles of government procurement as a means to efficiently and effectively deliver the Government's programmes.

(4) In line with the Commonwealth Procurement Guidelines: Core Policies and Principles 1998, the Portfolio's tender documentation promotes the development of ANZ industry by means that are consistent with the achievement of value for money objectives.

(5) See answer to Question (4).

(6) In accordance with the Commonwealth Procurement Guidelines: Core Policies and Principles 1998, the Portfolio follows the core principles of government procurement as a means to efficiently and effectively deliver the Government's programmes.

In accordance with annual reporting requirements, the Portfolio reports against an “Assessment of Performance against Purchasing Policies”.

For the 1990 -2000 Annual Report, DOFA advised the following:

“The Internal Audit Unit conducts probity reviews of DOFA's contracting arrangements to ensure compliance with the general probity principles of the Commonwealth Procurement Guidelines and Chief Executive Instructions. During 1999-2000, Internal Audit conducted 180 probity reviews within DOFA. All reviews ensured a defensible purchasing outcome in accordance with Commonwealth Procurement Guidelines and supporting policy and principles”.