Wednesday, July 6, 2022

$26m to diversify government procurement

A Progressive Procurement initiative to diversify government spend on goods and services and increase Māori business engagement with government procurement will receive $26 in government funding over the next two years.

Minister for Māori Development, Willie Jackson said the investment would build Māori business capability and shift government agency buying practices to be more inclusive.

“This investment in Māori business and workers delivers on a Labour election commitment to better support whānau Māori enterprise, and is part of a wider Budget strategy to focus on economic security in good times and bad,” he said.

“We set an expectation that government agencies will draw on more diverse suppliers with a target of five percent of the total number of mandated agencies’ procurement contracts awarded to Māori businesses.

“We’re seeing signs of success and we know we can do more. Achieving better economic outcomes by helping small to medium businesses to be tender ready is a game changer in that regard. This is creating positive regional outcomes in other areas such as employment and training too,” he said.
 
The $26 million funding announced will be used to:

  • Scale up local networks in regions to grow awareness of government opportunities and build capability;
  • Provide targeted one-to-one support to Māori businesses that are ready to deliver procurement solutions but need to lift capability to navigate and engage effectively in government tender processes;
  • Develop a centralised Māori business database;
  • Continue to engage with and build capability of government agencies to achieve long-term change in government procurement processes.

Te Puni Kōkiri and Ministry for Business, Innovation and Employment (MBIE) have been growing awareness of Progressive Procurement and reducing barriers to Māori businesses engaging in the complex government procurement environment, the Minister said.

“Our regional approach to improve that is working and the new funding will support us to deliver targeted capability uplift services for 100 Māori businesses per year.”

“Across Aotearoa we’ve seen some exemplar agencies who are using Progressive Procurement as a force for social good and inclusive economic growth. This is an exciting opportunity to continue that momentum and lift everyone up,” he said.

Minister Stuart Nash said government procurement was about using the nation’s collective buying power to deliver better value for people, communities and the planet.

“Procurement is critical to achieving a high-wage, low-emissions economy. Around the world, governments use procurement to deal with the real challenges we face, like climate change, growing inequality, uneven access to labour market opportunities or productivity tools, and the need for greater innovation and diverse business approaches,” said Mr Nash.

“This year’s Budget continues the government’s Wellbeing approach. What this means in practice is that we recognise there are many elements to making a successful economy and society.

“We need strong communities where we look after each other, as much as we need strong finances and sustainable growth. Government procurement plays a key role in this,” he said.

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