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Julie Collins, Katie Gallagher: Reforming Commonwealth Procurement Rules

Under a major change, up to $14 billion will be spent on helping small and medium businesses struggling with the mounting costs of rebounding from Covid-19.

The rules governing Commonwealth spending to double down on opportunities for small and medium businesses will be changed from Friday.

Under the major procurement rule changes, up to 20 percent of the government’s average annual spending of $70 billion on contracts will now be offered to SMEs, up from 10 percent.

The Albanian government says changes to Commonwealth procurement rules, which will take effect on Friday, will help small and medium-sized businesses grow while boosting the broader economy at the same time.

Finance Minister Katie Gallagher and Small Business Minister Julie Collins said doubling the buy-by-value target from SMEs from 10 to 20 per cent was a key part of their commitment to the Australian Purchase Scheme.

Ministers said changes to Commonwealth procurement rules will enable small and medium-sized businesses to speed up their recovery from the pandemic and natural disasters, as well as help them cope with rising costs.

It can eventually help small and medium businesses to hire more employees.

The revised CPR reports now require that procurement officials take into account what the procurement process may mean for climate change when making a core value-for-money assessment.

The changes are expected to help implement the government’s plan to cut emissions by 43 percent by 2030.

Senator Gallagher said the measures are intended to “make it easier” for small businesses to return to normal and thrive.

“This announcement is clear evidence that we will not waste time when it comes to taking practical steps to support business growth, create more jobs and ultimately help boost the Australian economy,” she said.

“This is the first step in implementing our Australian buying plan and we will have more to say about implementing this key element in our business plans to build a future Made in Australia.”

Collins said small businesses have been the engine room for the Australian economy.

“Small companies should not be denied government contracts just because they may not have the influence of larger companies,” she said.

“The rapid delivery of these changes shows that the Albanian government is serious about implementing our commitment to a better deal for small businesses.”

CPRs will now encourage entities to connect with multiple suppliers when purchasing from a panel arrangement in an effort to improve competition, increase value for money, and ensure a better deal for taxpayers.

Originally published as an overhaul of Commonwealth Procurement Rules for Small Business and the Climate

Read related topics: Climate Change

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