State agencies can now make purchases of $250,000 direct with local businesses © William Winkyi/Getty Images
State agencies can now make purchases of $250,000 direct with local businesses © William Winkyi/Getty Images

WA makes it easier for local firms to win contracts

1 June 2020

The government of Western Australia has changed procurement practices to make it easier for local companies to win contracts.

The changes include increasing the value of state government agency purchases direct from local businesses from $50,000 to $250,000. 

The threshold for public tender processes will be lifted by $250,000 to $500,000 when at least one local business is involved.

State agencies can obtain written quotations in place of a tender when the value of a procurement is between $250,000 and $500,000 and one or more local businesses can fulfil the contract.

State agencies will also be allowed to extend government contracts with local businesses for up to two years to provide firms with additional certainty.

The changes come into force from 2 June 2020 and will last to the end of the year.

The government said its Department of Finance will continue to provide oversight of goods and services contracts worth more than $250,000.

Finance minister Ben Wyatt said: “These measures support the government’s focus on economic stimulus to maximise business opportunities and support Western Australian jobs in this challenging economic climate. 

“This will enable agencies and departments to award government work to local businesses sooner and provide flexibility for the state to deliver recovery services.”

Earlier this month the state’s parliament provided legislation to simplify the state government procurement framework.

The Procurement Bill 2020 aims to streamline tender processes and documents across the government to make it easier for businesses to win state contracts.

A service priority review and special enquiry into government programmes and projects identified the existing procurement framework as complex, fragmented and inefficient.

Stakeholders who were consulted said small local businesses had frequently become frustrated when pitching for state contracts.

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