Business bulletin - 3 December 2015

'Buy Local' announced today

Northern Territory businesses will have more opportunity to compete for a greater percentage of the billions of dollars in government work awarded each year.

A new 'Buy Local' policy will replace the current Local Development and Value Adding (LDVA) policy framework and will drive greater emphasis on achieving local content and benefits from NT Government procurement.

One of the key elements of this policy announced by Business Minister Peter Styles today is increasing the minimum weighting in favour of local content and benefits from 20% to 25% in all quotes and tenders. This is the highest of any state or territory government in Australia.

The NT Government spends approximately $3 billion on goods and services annually, and current reforms aim to use this purchasing footprint for the greatest economic benefit to the Territory.

The NT Government has been undertaking a broad suite of procurement reform initiatives to make its procurement process simpler, efficient and more transparent.

It commissioned a review of the LDVA policy in September this year in response to ongoing feedback from the business community that the processes were too complicated and out-of-date and local businesses were missing opportunities

This policy has been developed following extensive consultation with industry including: roadshows across the Territory, a survey which received around 500 written responses and direct engagement with key industry associations through roundtables, workshops, business breakfast events.

The Buy Local Policy includes the following changes:

  • Introducing mandatory local involvement in all requests for quotes worth up to $100,000. To support this measure a new term 'Territory Enterprise' will be introduced to identify local businesses as 'An enterprise operating in the Northern Territory, with a significant permanent presence in the NT and employing NT residents.' This means government will continue to consult with the Industry Capability Network NT (ICN NT) about local supplier capability at the Tier 1 and 2 procurement levels, to ensure that a capable Territory Enterprise is included in every approach to market.
  • Increasing the minimum weighting of local content and benefits from 20% to 25% in all quotes and tenders.
  • Ensuring local content and benefit commitments included in tender responses are carried through into the contract terms and are monitored throughout.
  • Establishing an independent panel of Territorians to review and advise on Buy Local aspects of tender responses and contracts, estimated to be worth more than $5 million. This will enhance the transparency of the procurement process and will ensure that government evaluation teams have access to all relevant information in making procurement decisions. The advisory panel will also play a role in ensuring these commitments are followed through and the local benefits realised.

ICN NT will be a key partner in the implementation of this policy, and all local businesses are encouraged to register and ensure their full capabilities are detailed within their ICN profiles.

The Buy Local policy will be implemented commencing from January 2016 and businesses are expected to see immediate benefits in the form of more opportunities to tender and clearer, simpler tender documents. Nominations for the representatives to the independent panel will be sought before the end of the year.

FLNG announcement

The Northern Territory’s economy is set to benefit following a major announcement from Shell Prelude FLNG.

Australian engineering company Monadelphous Group has been awarded a long term maintenance and modification contract on Shell’s Prelude FLNG facility.

Monadelphous has an existing fabrication workshop based at East Arm, Darwin. It is anticipated the company will utilise this facility to carry out maintenance for Shell’s prelude FLNG operations.

The maintenance and modifications contract includes brownfield modifications and turn around services to LNG process plant, support utilities, hull and non-process infrastructure.

This contract has potential flow on benefits for other businesses and suppliers in Darwin and the Northern Territory, and is expected to create business opportunities and local jobs.

Awarding the contract to a firm with a significant Darwin presence also recognises Darwin’s growing status as the region's oil and gas maintenance and operation hub.

The contract, worth around $200 million, is for an initial period of seven years with a further two-year extension options.

New online VET tool

Territorians now have access to one more tool to help them on their career journey.

A new vocational education and training (VET) website has been launched to help school leavers looking to enter the workforce, current employees hoping to upskill and employers wanting to build skills within their workplaces.

Chair of the Northern Territory Employment and Training Advisory Board, Andy Bruyn, said the website launch was just the first step towards giving young Territorians a signposted career pathway leading to rewarding futures in our workplaces.

"There is a lot of hard work happening behind the scenes to compliment this first step, but accurate and easy to find and understand information about available opportunities is a great beginning," Mr Bruyn said.

Visit the website VET.nt.gov.au.

Painting business shows its true colours

A local Darwin business is painting the town red.  

All Paint, Painting Services recently won the $1 million project to repaint the external structure of TIO stadium, and will actually paint it blue, orange and grey.

A team of 15 will repaint external walls, doors, handrails and concrete surfaces of TIO stadium.

All Paint, a vocational education and training employer, has used the NT Government’s wage subsidy to increase Indigenous participation in construction projects on previous tenders.

The funding has made it possible for All Paint to build their workforce and give Indigenous jobseekers a chance to get their foot in the door of the construction industry.

For their tender submission, All Paint also contacted Karen Sheldon Training who provided assistance with the Provisional Sum application and sourced suitable candidates for the project.

The repaint of TIO Stadium is expected to be completed by February 2016.

PM creates a stir 

More than 300 local business people flocked to hear from Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull at a recent business lunch hosted by the Chamber of Commerce at SKYCITY Darwin.

The PM told the business community they were in the most exciting city in Australia, during a period of unprecedented growth, stressing that businesses needed to be agile to succeed in the current context. 

The PM’s Darwin visit was part of a whistlestop tour - he arrived from Turkey via the Philippines on Friday, and departing for Malaysia the next day.

As well as being at the centre of a 'selfie' frenzy, the PM found himself the proud new owner of a unique memento of the Top End, a whip handmade by Mick Denigan.

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Last updated: 12 October 2017