Ethical Supplier Mandate for suppliers

The Ethical Supplier Mandate outlines how the Queensland Government manages instances where suppliers:

  • fail to meet requirements of the Queensland Procurement Policy
  • make commitments and don't follow though
  • breach contractual or policy requirements
  • break laws.

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The Mandate ensures that we conduct business with ethical, environmentally and socially responsible suppliers, and removes unethical behaviour from the supply chain.

Unethical behaviour includes:

  • a breach in a supplier's predetermined contractual obligations
  • actions that breach policy or laws.

The Mandate benefits suppliers, workers and the broader Queensland community by:

  • ensuring suppliers are treated fairly and not exposed to undercutting and unjust competition
  • making Queensland workplaces fairer and safer
  • ensuring that Queensland taxpayers' money is used to build the local economy and support jobs.

Note: The Mandate complements the best practice principles for procurement, which continue to apply to major and declared projects.

Who is subject to the Mandate

When the Mandate applies

The Ethical Supplier Mandate will apply to all suppliers and their subcontractors progressively, as outlined:

  • budget sector agencies
    • Building, Construction and Maintenance suppliers – 1 August 2019
    • Transport Infrastructure and Services suppliers – 1 October 2019
    • Other categories – in 2021
  • government owned corporations – determined in 2021
  • statutory bodies – determined in 2021
  • special purpose vehicles – determined in 2021.

How the Mandate works

The Mandate imposes no additional burden on ethical suppliers—only suppliers who repeatedly breach contractual obligations, policies or laws, unless their conduct is due to an honest mistake, oversight or accident.

If we suspect a supplier has breached their contractual obligation or hasn't complied with policy, the procuring agency investigates each allegation.

An independent body, called the Tripartite Procurement Advisory Panel (the Panel) makes demerit and sanction recommendations to the procuring agency.

They make recommendations on a case-by-case basis, depending on the severity of the non-compliance.

Penalties under the Mandate

Non-compliance will be considered for penalties, including:

  • a demerit system
  • a potential for sanction – ban from tendering for government work for up to 12 months

The supplier is assessed against a sliding scale of non-compliance:

  • minor breaches – 2 demerit points
  • moderate breaches – 5 demerit points
  • major breaches – 10 demerit points and
  • aggravated breaches – 20 points.

If a supplier accumulates 20 demerit points in a 12-month period, they face the potential for sanction – including loss of prequalification status and exclusion from future government procurement tendering opportunities.

If a supplier is sanctioned and has an existing contract with government, any extension options under that contract won't be exercised.

Penalties expire 1 year from the date they're issued.

We issue penalties only for actions that occur for contracts that start after the Mandate commences. We don't apply them retrospectively.

Contracts for procurement covered by the Mandate will contain provisions reflecting this.

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