Mind the Gap - Finance Minister Announces New Indigenous Procurement Guidelines

Nic Crowther
Tue 26 May

In a year where Indigenous affairs are at the forefront of public debate, Finance Minister Mathias Cormann has released the Indigenous Procurement Policy guidelines. 

The media release states the following:

“The Indigenous Procurement Policy guidelines will commit the Government for the first time to an Indigenous businesses purchasing target and provide significant benefits for Indigenous businesses.

“Through governments working more closely with Indigenous businesses, we will be able to provide the jobs, skills and training to get more First Australians into meaningful employment,” Minister for Indigenous Affairs Nigel Scullion said. 

“Indigenous businesses are around 100 times more likely to employ an Indigenous person and overwhelmingly, Indigenous businesses are small businesses. This policy is about creating opportunities for these Indigenous small businesses to flourish and grow.”

It’s a sad indictment on the broader small business community that Indigenous employment is so low. Questions will be asked as to whether simply focussing on growing indigenous-owned businesses will remedy the problem, or simply enhance the divide. The policy is in effect from 1 July 2015 and will be reviewed at the end of the first year to determine the settings are appropriate.

The results of this policy after three or four years will certainly make for some interesting reading. 

You can read the full policy document here