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Call for improved Transparency in Government Procurement

The recent NZRise submission into the Consultation on proposed Government Procurement Rules 4th Edition held a strong theme of seeking Transparency at all levels of the procurement process. We have taken these recommendations one step further and proposed an initial set of transparency improvements MBIE could introduce.

The following reporting should be asked of every Government entity who are subject to the Government Rules of Sourcing and procure goods and/or services in the Digital Technology (often referred to as ICT) space:

  • All Panels they operate
  • Membership of those panels
  • Whether the panel is open or closed
  • Value of work $$ transacted via each panel per annum
  • Number of secondary procurement processes via each panel per annum
  • List of all other suppliers to the agency via other contract mechanisms
  • Value of expenditure with NZ Businesses vs value of expenditure with Overseas Businesses per annum
  • Top 10 supplier by $$ value per annum
  • Number of advertised opportunities that do not proceed/aren’t awarded
  • % of projects that were in Annual Procurement Plans (or not)
  • % by $ value of contracts awarded via GETS vs via other mechanisms

Again this is a suggested initial reporting set, we would expect a far more aspirational transparency programme from MBIE as the lead agency on Government Procurement.

Open Government Partnership

New Zealand Government is a member of the Open Government Partnership, as such our government has committed to “government transparency, empowering citizens, combatting corruption, and using new technologies to make government more accountable and effective”.

In their latest Open Government Partnership Implementation Plan the NZ Government has committed to moving their tender listing website GETS to an Open Data set. NZRise applaud this move and has been involved in providing insight into how a GETS dataset might be used. We have also cautioned this is just one tiny step towards procurement practice transparency and would encourage a more ambitious set of transparency goals are devised with urgency.

Praise for Inland Revenue

Inland Revenue have taken a great step in publicly listing the suppliers they have spent over $NZ500,000 with. We really do praise Inland Revenue for making this information transparent and encourage other agencies to follow their leadership role here.

The criteria Inland Revenue selected to differentiate New Zealand companies vs International does concern us as companies can be incorporated in New Zealand with shareholders who are wholly international and/or delivery of good and services can also be transacted entirely offshore – we trust as the tax department Inland Revenue do only transact with those who pay taxes proportionately in New Zealand.

“The list shows those suppliers that are incorporated under the New Zealand Companies Act 1993 with a New Zealand Certificate of Incorporation (resident in New Zealand under our criteria), and those that are not (International).”

Any questions on this please comment on this post or contact the NZRise Co-Chairs Victoria MacLennan and Don Christie.

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