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Asset management, purchasing and grants

Asset management

ASEA’s asset management strategy emphasises whole-of-life asset management and seeks to minimise holdings of surplus and underperforming assets.

Our stocktake of fixed and intangible assets in 2019–20 confirmed their location and condition, and emphasised to custodial officers their responsibility to ensure the safe-keeping of assets in their custody.

Details of the assets administered in 2019–20 can be found in our financial statements in Part 5 of this report.


During 2019–20, procurement and purchasing activities (with the exception of any instance reported in its Certificate of Compliance) were conducted in accordance with the Commonwealth Procurement Rules and we made reasonable enquiries to ensure that the procurement:

  • achieved value for money
  • encouraged competition and be non-discriminatory
  • used public resources in an efficient, effective, economical and ethical manner that is not inconsistent with the policies of the Commonwealth
  • facilitated accountable and transparent decision making
  • encouraged appropriate engagement with risk
  • was commensurate with the scale and scope of our operations.

Australian National Audit Office Clauses

All of ASEA’s awarded contracts or Deeds of Standing Offer valued at more than $100,000 (inclusive of GST) entered into during 2019–20 contained an Australian National Audit Office (ANAO) ‘access to contractors premises’ clause.

Exempt contracts

There were no contracts in excess of $10,000 (inclusive of GST) or standing offers that were exempt from the requirement to publish on AusTender during 2019–20.

Small business

We support small and medium enterprises (SMEs) by paying providers for goods and services as soon as practicable and within required timeframes, and engaging in ongoing monitoring and improvement to our procurement and contracting practices.

We use the Department of Finance’s Commonwealth Contracting Suite for low-risk procurement. This has significantly reduced the length and complexity of most tender processes and contracts by using a set of terms and conditions that are consistent with other agencies that SMEs would be familiar with.

ASEA supports small business participation in the Commonwealth Government procurement market. Small and medium enterprises (SME) and small enterprise participation statistics are available on the Department of Finance’s website.


No grants awarded by ASEA during 2019–20.


Due to our size, it is necessary to engage consultants to provide specialist expertise or independent research.

The decision to engage a consultant is made in accordance with finance laws. Prior to engaging consultants, we take into account the skills and resources required for the task, the skills available internally, and the cost effectiveness of engaging external expertise. Legal advice on consultancy arrangements is sought where relevant.

During 2019–20, five new consultancy contracts were entered into involving total actual expenditure of $51,777.00 (inclusive of GST). In addition, four ongoing consultancy contracts were active during the period, involving total actual expenditure of $178,032.14 (inclusive of GST).

Annual reports contain information about actual expenditure on contracts for consultancies. Information on the value of contracts and consultancies is available on the AusTender website at www.tenders.gov.au.


As required under section 311A of the Commonwealth Electoral Act 1918, particulars of payments made by the agency during 2019–20 over a certain amount for advertising must be reported.

There was nil expenditure by ASEA during 2019–20.

Ecologically sustainable development and environmental performance

Section 516A of the Environmental Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999 (Cth) requires that government organisations report annually on their environmental performance and contribution to ecologically sustainable development.

We are committed to minimising the environmental impact of our operations and do this by:

  • operating a paper, plastic, glass and cardboard recycling program
  • effective use of electricity by using energy efficient office machinery
  • toner cartridge and waste toner recycling
  • using energy efficient computer monitors
  • using low wattage lights throughout our offices
  • operating lighting via motion sensors to reduce energy consumption
  • reducing paper usage by centralising printers and setting them to double-sided printing as a default
  • using office paper that is carbon neutral, recycled and/or has an environmental sustainability rating.