Queensland Government Supplier Code of Conduct 2023 – Overview and application
The Queensland Government Supplier Code of Conduct 2023 (the Code) sets out the expectations that government has of businesses that want to sell their goods or services to the government, and outlines what constitutes a responsible supplier.
The Queensland Procurement Policy 2023 (QPP 2023) states our intent to do business with ethically, environmentally and socially responsible suppliers, as part of applying a responsible public procurement approach. This includes applying requirements regarding the Queensland Government Supplier Code of Conduct. The Code details these expectations and what constitutes a responsible supplier.
Clause 20 QPP 2023 stipulates that invitation documentation must require suppliers to warrant that they comply with the Code. Contract documentation must include a condition requiring ongoing compliance with the Code during the contract term.
The Code complements existing laws, policies and Queensland Government terms and conditions.
The Code replaces the previous Queensland Government Supplier Code of Conduct and applies to all procurement activities regardless of their value from 1 June 2023.
Each agency is responsible for implementing the Code for all of their procurement, noting that the implementation approach will vary depending on the procurement value and complexity. For example, an agency may ask suppliers to sign a formal commitment letter to warrant compliance with the Code as part of their response.
Agencies should bring the Code to the attention of suppliers for existing contracts and standing offer agreements.
The Code should be applied to any standing offer arrangements if they are 'refreshed' prior to expiry, or when exercising extensions to existing standing offer arrangements or contracts.
To support agencies to apply the Code, refer to this guide.
During a procurement process
In a procurement process, there may be situations where the supplier declares:
- that they are not compliant with the Code
- that they are not compliant with the Code with a commitment to becoming compliant at a later stage in the procurement process.
Agencies should ensure that the procurement evaluation plan is written to provide clear guidance on how such situations will be handled.
In Situation No. 1, agencies reserve the right to do business with suppliers which demonstrate compliance with the Code. Where this is done, an agency can then choose to set aside from further evaluation an offer from a non-compliant supplier.
In Situation No. 2, while it is ultimately a matter for the agency concerned, actions could include:
- awarding a lower score to a supplier who intends to become compliant when scoring responses relating to the Code (when compared to a supplier who is already compliant)
- asking the supplier concerned to provide details on the non-compliance, and the action and timeframes needed to ensure compliance
- only ultimately awarding a contract to a supplier who will be compliant by the contract's date of commencement
- continuing to monitor compliance with the Code as part of the usual contract management process, particularly in relation to the area of original non-compliance.
Contract award and management
According to Clause 20 QPP 2023, agencies must ensure that contract documentation includes a condition requiring ongoing compliance with the Code during the contract term. In complying with this clause, agencies can then use this condition (as part of normal contract management practice) to address instances of non-compliance, or where there is a reasonable suspicion of non-compliance, during the life of the contract.
Concerns about breaches of the Code should be directed to the agency undertaking the procurement. Concerns regarding illegal or corrupt activity should be immediately referred to either the Queensland Police Service, Australian Federal Police, or the Crime and Corruption Commission. Concerns regarding breaches of regulation should be referred to the relevant regulatory body.
Agencies can contact the Queensland Government Procurement Compliance Branch if they are unsure how to handle a compliance matter.
Contact Queensland Government Procurement if you have any questions regarding the Code.
- Phone: 13 QGOV (13 74 68)
- Email: email@example.com