National Partnership Agreement on Indigenous Economic Participation

The National Partnership Agreement on Indigenous Economic Participation supports the target set by the Council of Australian Governments (COAG) to halve the gap in employment outcomes between Indigenous and non-Indigenous Australians within ten years.

The agreement aims to assist up to 13,000 Indigenous Australians into employment and make sure they have the skills and capabilities required for today’s labour market.

The agreement has four main elements:

  1. The creation of properly paid, sustainable jobs in government service delivery from positions that previously relied on Community Development Employment Projects (CDEP) assistance

    The Commonwealth and the States and Territories have committed to creating up to  2, 000 sustainable jobs in government service delivery previously supported by CDEP. This number comprises of around 1, 280 jobs supporting Federal Government service delivery and around 720 jobs in state, territory and local government services.

  2. Strengthening government procurement policies to enhance Indigenous employment opportunities, increase the skills of Indigenous Australians and support Indigenous businesses 

    In February 2010 the Australian Government launched the Indigenous Opportunities Policy to provide more opportunities for Indigenous people and businesses in government procurement. In line with this policy, the Australian Government has funded the Australian Indigenous Minority Supplier Council (AIMSC) as a three year pilot through the Indigenous Employment Program. AIMSC aims to encourage the growth of Indigenous businesses by linking corporate and government purchasers with certified Indigenous suppliers of goods and services.

  3. Incorporation of Indigenous workforce strategies into major COAG reforms

    Where a new national partnership agreement or other major COAG reform is being developed, the national partnership agreement or reform should make a commitment to incorporating an Indigenous workforce strategy as appropriate. Governments should also incorporate Indigenous workforce strategies into national partnership agreement implementation plans.

  4. Increasing public-sector Indigenous employment and career development by 2015 to reflect the population share of Indigenous Australians

    The Department of Education, Employment and Workplace Relations is working with the Australian Public Service Commission on strategies to increase the number of Indigenous Australians employed in the Commonwealth public sector.

The Australian Government is leading implementation of the agreement in partnership with state and territory governments.

All governments share responsibility for working with the private sector, local government and Indigenous communities to increase Indigenous employment.

The full roles and responsibilities for each party are set out in the Bilateral Implementation Plans, agreed in December 2009.

The agreement will expire on 30 June 2013 and be reviewed in its final year. The review will consider the progress made by all parties in achieving the agreed outcomes.

Content Updated: 20 June 2012