Audit Committee to examine Watt procurement review & NDIA issues

Issue date: Thursday, 13 April 2023

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The Joint Committee of Public Accounts and Audit (JCPAA) will hold a public hearing on Friday 14 April to examine the findings of the Independent Review of Services Australia and NDIA Procurement and Contracting led by Dr Ian Watt AC (the Watt review), as part of its ongoing inquiry into Commonwealth procurement.

The Watt review examined 95 procurements undertaken by Services Australia and NDIA from 2015–16 to the present, and found that 19 procurements with an approximate value of $374 million showed inconsistencies with the Commonwealth Procurement Rules or did not show good practice.

Mr Julian Hill MP, the Chair of the Committee, noted that Dr Watt’s findings closely mirrored the issues that had been raised by the Australian National Audit Office during the Committee’s procurement inquiry.

“The Watt review flagged five of the 95 procurements as being of lower standard than comparable procurements undertaken by the agencies,” Mr Hill stated. “The Committee is keen to question the key parties involved in the procurement process to gain an understanding of where the issues lie and how they have been addressed.”

The Committee will be hearing from Dr Ian Watt AC, followed by the two agencies subject of the review, as well as representatives from a number of companies who were awarded contracts identified as being of particular concern in the Watt review including Infosys Pty Ltd, Portland, Synergy 360 / Milo Consulting and Australian Property Reserve Pty Ltd.

Following the session on procurement, the JCPAA will continue its program of public hearings for its inquiry into Commonwealth Financial Statements hearing from the NDIA.

Details for the public hearings are:

Friday 14 April 2023

Inquiry into Commonwealth procurement
Time: 10.00am – 4.00pm AEST
Venue: Committee Room 2R1, Parliament House, Canberra

Inquiry into Commonwealth Financial Statements
Time: 4.15pm – 6.00pm AEST
Venue: Committee Room 2R1, Parliament House, Canberra

Further information about the inquiries is available on the Committee website.

Media inquiries

Mr Julian Hill MP, Chair of the Joint Committee of Public Accounts and Audit on
(03) 9791 7770 (Electorate Office).

For background information

Committee Secretariat
02 6277 4615

For more information about this Committee, you can visit its website. On the site, you can make a submission to an inquiry, read other submissions, and get details for upcoming public hearings. You can also track the Committee and receive email updates by clicking on the blue ‘Track Committee’ button in the bottom right-hand corner of the page.

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