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The Agency’s approach to procuring goods and services, including consultancies, is consistent with the Commonwealth Procurement Rules. These rules are applied to activities through the Agency’s Accountable Authority Instructions and internal policies.

Where appropriate, the Agency utilises panel arrangements for the procurement of goods and services where an assessment of suppliers against evaluation criteria has already been conducted. Panels are usually established by open tender and through deeds of standing offers with contracts (work orders) formed under those deeds.

Under the Shared Services Arrangements, the Agency is included under PM&C’s Annual Procurement Plan, which is listed on AusTender to give prospective suppliers the opportunity to prepare for potential work with the Agency.

The Agency fully supports the Indigenous Procurement Policy and under the PM&C portfolio has met its purchasing target set by the government to ensure that opportunities for Indigenous employment and business continue to grow.

Small Business

The Agency supports small business participation in the Australian Government procurement market. The Agency’s procurement practices support Small-Medium Enterprise (SMEs) by adopting whole-of-government solutions to simplify interactions with SMEs. This includes using the Commonwealth Contracting Suite for low-risk procurements valued under $200,000.

In accordance with paragraph 5.4 of the Commonwealth Procurement Rules, the Agency has procurement practices and internal policies in place to ensure that SMEs are not unfairly discriminated against. These measures include but are not limited to:

  • the mandatory use of the Commonwealth Contracting Suite for all low-risk procurements up to $200,000 (GST inclusive)
  • formal procurement training, including a session on contracting with SMEs
  • a dedicated online procurement toolkit to provide advice to procuring officers.

Participation statistics for SMEs are available on the Department of Finance’s website at https://www.finance.gov.au/government/procurement/statistics-australian-governmentprocurement-contracts

Asset Management

The Agency manages its assets in accordance with the Accountable Authority Instructions, relevant accounting standards and Department of Finance requirements.


The Agency engages consultants where specialist skills are required and not available in house. Consultancies normally relate to individuals, partnerships or corporations that provide professional, independent, and expert advice and services. Decisions to engage consultants were made in accordance with the PGPA Act, the Commonwealth Procurement Rules and relevant internal policies.

This report contains information about actual expenditure on contracts for consultancies. Information on the value of individual contracts and consultancies is available on the AusTender website at www.tenders.gov.au.

During 2019–20, the Agency entered into eight consultancy contracts involving expenditure of $0.73m [GST inclusive] with one ongoing contract active at the end of the financial year.

Table 7: Consultants 2019-20


No. of New contracts entered into during the period


Total actual expenditure during the period on new contracts (inc. $GST)


No. of Ongoing contracts engaging consultants that were entered into during a previous period


Total actual expenditure during the period on ongoing contracts (inc. $GST)



The Agency does not directly administer any grants as per the Commonwealth Grant Rules and Guidelines. However, the Agency is a co-sponsor on the Drought Community Outreach Program. The policy entity for the program is the Department of Infrastructure, Transport, Regional Development and Communications, and the administering entity is the Department of Industry, Science, Energy and Resources. Information on the program can be found at the Department of Industry, Science, Energy and Resources website.

Australian National Audit Office Access Clauses

During 2019–20, The Agency entered into two contracts for leased premises over $100,000 that do not contain an ANAO access clause. The details are outlined in Table 8.

Table 8: ANAO Clauses

Name of contactor



Reason why access was not included


Lease of premises – Level 3, 121 Marcus Clarke St Canberra

$510,126 which includes 3.5% p.a. escalation at 1 July each year.

The contracts used an industry standard lease agreement. We maintain access to documents associated with the lease which are available to ANAO.

Perpetual Corporate Trust Limited

Lease of premises – 10 Felix St Brisbane.

Expected lease amount $519,147 which includes a lease incentive rebate and escalation of 3% p.a. at 16 March each year.

The contracts used an industry standard lease agreement. We maintain access to documents associated with the lease which are available to ANAO.

Exempt Contracts

No contracts in excess of $10,000 (inclusive of GST) during 2019–20 were exempted by the Agency from being published on AusTender on the basis that they would disclose exempt matters under the Freedom of Information Act 1982.