Aboriginal suppliers

We’re actively encouraging government agencies to buy from Aboriginal businesses.
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What you need to know
  1. We’re actively encouraging government agencies to buy from Aboriginal businesses.
  2. To do that, we recommend agencies first consider using an Aboriginal business for goods and services contracts up to $250,000.
  3. On goods and services contracts over $10 million, suppliers must consider opportunities for Aboriginal participation.
  4. For construction contracts over $1 million, suppliers must direct 1.5% of the project value to Aboriginal participation.
  5. The NSW Government is making it easier for Aboriginal businesses to work with government.

Encouraging government agencies to buy from Aboriginal businesses

The NSW Government values the contribution that the First Economy makes to the community and supports the growth of Aboriginal-owned businesses.

The Aboriginal Procurement Policy (APP) and Aboriginal Participation in Construction Policy (APIC) help Aboriginal businesses get government contracts – directly and as sub-contractors.

Employing Aboriginal people in the construction industry is also a priority.

Goods and services contracts

The Aboriginal Procurement Policy (APP) applies to goods and services contracts.

The policy requires that, for goods and services contracts up to $250,000, government agencies should first consider buying from an Aboriginal business on a prequalification scheme.

Agencies can buy from prequalified Aboriginal businesses by requesting a single quote.

Where there’s no prequalification scheme, agencies can buy directly from Aboriginal businesses for contracts up to $250,000 even if there’s a whole-of-government arrangement already in place.

Goods and services contracts over $10 million

The Aboriginal Procurement Policy requires that suppliers consider Aboriginal participation in goods and services contracts over $10 million. This can include sub-contracting, employment and training activity.

Construction contracts

The Aboriginal Participation in Construction Policy (APIC) applies to construction projects.

For construction contracts up to $250,000, government agencies can negotiate directly with Aboriginal businesses.

For construction projects up to $1 million, agencies can invite multiple Aboriginal businesses on prequalification schemes to participate in a selective tender.

Construction projects over $1 million

For any construction projects over $1 million or that are primarily directed to Aboriginal communities, agencies must require their head contractors to direct at least 1.5% of the project value toward Aboriginal participation. This can be through sub-contracting to Aboriginal businesses, employing or training Aboriginal staff, or through engaging Aboriginal consultants.

Register for government work

Under the APP and APIC policies, Aboriginal businesses must be recognised as an Aboriginal business by a suitable organisation such as Supply Nation or the NSW Indigenous Chamber of Commerce.

If you own an Aboriginal business and are recognised by either of these bodies, we encourage you to register for opportunities to supply to government.

We advertise most government opportunities on eTendering. Once you register on eTendering, you can apply to join relevant prequalification schemes and respond to tenders.

When you’re accepted on a prequalification scheme, you may be invited to quote for specific opportunities that fit your company’s profile. You’ll also often be able to apply for other opportunities more efficiently, using the information you’ve already uploaded.

If you are an Aboriginal business and interested in sub-contracting opportunities, you can search contracts awarded on eTendering. Here, you will be able to find details of suppliers that have been awarded contracts so that you can contact them to seek out any sub-contracting opportunities that may be available.

Register on eTendering now.

Concierge service

The concierge service is an initiative to personally reach out to Aboriginal businesses throughout all of NSW and help them gain greater access to NSW Government procurement opportunities.

NSW Procurement will provide assistance in matching agency buyers, where possible, to Aboriginal businesses in all categories of work including ICT, construction, professional services and all other goods and services.

In addition NSW Procurement can provide advice on various Aboriginal policies and practical advice, and examples on how to directly engage Aboriginal businesses subject to value for money outcomes.

Agencies and Aboriginal businesses in NSW can seek further information on the concierge service by emailing sourcing@treasury.nsw.gov.au or phoning 1800 679 289.

Events for Aboriginal suppliers

The NSW Indigenous Chamber of Commerce (NSWICC) is holding a series of workshops on supplying to government.

To register go to NSWICC events calendar on the NSWICC website.

The Department of Educations is inviting Aboriginal-owned businesses and SMEs to attend free Supplying to Education webinars.

To register go to Supplying to Education on the Department of Education website.

Policy review

The APP and APIC policy were reviewed in 2019. This review recommended improvements which will make the policies simpler and more effective.

Key changes that were recommended are:

  • merge the policies into one simple document
  • set annual targets for awarding goods and services contracts to Aboriginal-owned businesses
  • agencies direct 1% of procurement spend to Aboriginal businesses in procurement categories where there are Aboriginal-=owned businesses available to supply the NSW Government
  • all procurement contracts over $7.5 million must direct at least 1.5% of the contract value to Aboriginal procurement through spend with Aboriginal businesses, employment of Aboriginal people or capacity building. Unspent funds are to be directed to Training Services NSW for programs that support Aboriginal employment and capacity building
  • agency targets and performance are published.

Read the Aboriginal Procurement Policy and Aboriginal Participation in Construction Policy 2019 Review Report PDF, 1314.83 KB.

An updated Aboriginal Procurement Policy is being prepared. The updated policy will replace the current APP and APIC policy.

Related content

  • How to supply to government: Read an overview of supplying to government based on your business type and the buying methods we use.
  • SMEs and regional businesses: Learn about how the NSW Government is prioritising SMEs and regional businesses and what you need to do to apply.
  • Contracts and schemes: Discover how our procurement arrangements work and why we use them.
  • Tenders: Find out how the government runs tenders for new work and what you need to do to be part of them.