Procurement of Goods and Services from PricewaterhouseCoopers

Purpose

This Procurement Policy Note is to advise Commonwealth procurers of the mutual agreement between the Department of Finance (Finance) and PricewaterhouseCoopers Australia (PwC Australia) that PwC Australia will not bid for any new Commonwealth work at least until 1 December 2024.

Context

To ensure a coordinated and efficient approach across the Commonwealth, Finance has taken responsibility for managing the Commonwealth’s response to the ethical issues arising from the PwC Australia/ Tax Practitioner Board matter and forming a whole of government view on PwC Australia’s ethical soundness.

Finance’s examination of PwC Australia’s ethical soundness is ongoing. In recognition of the significant number of outstanding investigations still underway into PwC Australia and PwC International and the timeframes set out by PwC Australia in its response to the Independent Review of Governance, Culture and Accountability (Switkowski Review), PwC Australia has agreed with the Commonwealth that it will temporarily cease new contract engagements with Australian Government entities captured by the Commonwealth Procurement Rules until 1 December 2024. This timeframe will allow PwC Australia further time to implement the Switkowski Review recommendations and for the current investigations and inquiries to be progressed.

Under this agreement, Commonwealth officials should not be entering into any contracts with PwC Australia for any approaches to market which close before 1 December 2024. This agreement captures new engagements (including under Whole of Government Panel arrangements), including new contracts with a third party which include PwC Australia being appointed as subcontractors to that third party.

This agreement does not cover the ongoing licencing or sale of PwC proprietary products (software) and existing contracts.

For the avoidance of doubt, this note does not apply to:

  • procurements/contracts with PricewaterhouseCoopers Indigenous Consulting (PwC Indigenous). Finance has separately concluded a review into PwC Indigenous and found that it was appropriate for the Commonwealth to continue engaging with PwC Indigenous.
  • procurements/contracts with Scyne Advisory Pty Ltd (Scyne). Commonwealth procurers should refer to the Procurement Policy Note on the novation of PwC contracts to Scyne.

Further Advice

At the conclusion of the agreement period, Finance will provide an update to entities on the status of the cessation.

Entities should continue to be mindful of their requirements to consider relevant experience and performance history when assessing value for money in all procurements and the need to monitor the ethical behaviour of suppliers throughout the term of any contract. The Procurement Policy Note – Ethical conduct of tenderers and suppliers contains further guidance for procuring officials.

Further questions can be directed to procurementagencyadvice@finance.gov.au.


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