- Updated Buy Local policy to ensure State Government contracts create more work for regional Western Australians
- Local businesses to be given priority to carry out work in regional WA
- WA Buy Local Policy 2020 expected to create thousands of regional jobs and support COVID-19 recovery
Premier Mark McGowan today unveiled the new and improved WA Buy Local Policy 2020, which has been overhauled to create more opportunities for regional businesses and thousands of jobs in regional Western Australia.
The current Buy Local policy, introduced in 2002, is designed to ensure regional businesses benefit from the State Government's annual $27 billion spend on goods, services and works.
A 2017 Auditor General's report found the existing policy was not achieving the required employment and economic benefits for the State.
The McGowan Government's revised WA Buy Local Policy 2020 will ensure State Government agencies prioritise local businesses that are based in the regional location in which the work or service is being delivered.
Local businesses in the region that the work is being carried out will be invited to bid for contracts in their local area and the revised Regional Price Preferences will ensure these businesses are given a stronger weighting than those from other parts of the State.
For example, if a regional business submits a bid of $5 million, it is eligible for a Regional Price Preference of up to $500,000 and the bid is assessed as though it was $4.5 million. If the bid is successful, the price paid to the supplier would remain $5 million.
A Perth-based business can only claim a preference of up to $250,000 if it includes a commitment to source content from the location where the contract will be delivered and its bid is assessed as though it was $4.75 million.
Other improvements to the policy include:
- training for regional contractors in understanding the policy and how to apply for contracts;
- 'look-ahead' lists of forthcoming tenders to allow local contractors more time to bid;
- increase in contract thresholds for regional offices of State Government agencies, to allow greater local decision-making about contracting of works, goods and services;
- establishing new communication channels between regional stakeholders and the State Government, including regular Regional Communication Forums and deploying the existing Local Content Adviser Network;
- new Implementation Agreements, reviewed annually, for State Government agencies to commit to applying the Buy Local policy; and
- increased reporting of agency outcomes to monitor the policy's effectiveness and identify further improvements.
The WA Buy Local 2020 policy complements the McGowan Government's successful implementation of the WA Jobs Act and the Western Australian Industry Participation Strategy (WAIPS) in creating local jobs and boosting the economy.
Since the introduction of the WAIPS in March 2018, almost 6,000 regional jobs and 173 regional apprenticeships and traineeships have been created.
The new WA Buy Local Policy 2020 is expected to create a further 3,000 regional jobs and more than 200 apprenticeships and traineeships during the first 12 months of its operation, critical for a State-wide recovery from the economic impacts of COVID-19.
For more information, visit http://industrylink.wa.gov.au
Comments attributed to Premier Mark McGowan:
"The beefed-up WA Buy Local Policy 2020 will help stimulate regional economies and create thousands of jobs for people in regional WA.
"The policy will play an important role in maximising opportunities for local businesses and creating more work for people in regional WA from the $27 billion spent annually on State Government goods, services and works.
"This is all about ensuring that local businesses are given every opportunity to carry out work for the State Government in their local area.
"The second round of Regional Communication Forums will ensure the intensive work done to date to canvas the views of regional stakeholders carries on into the implementation phase for further refinements.
"Our number one focus is to ensure Western Australia recovers strongly from the COVID-19 pandemic, and the updated Buy Local policy will support local economies in regional WA and create jobs for local workers."
Comments attributed to Regional Development Minister Alannah MacTiernan:
"The new Buy Local policy contains a strong commitment by the McGowan Government to maximise opportunities for regional businesses.
"This is a great initiative that will boost regional economies impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic and also create jobs in the regions.
"The policy will help regional businesses to become more competitive by providing SMEs with look-ahead lists on project opportunities."
Premier's office - 6552 5000
Regional Development Minister's office - 6552 6200