Supporting business  |  5 Aug 2020

More than three-quarters of Christchurch City Council’s spending last year was with Canterbury businesses and trading locally is an ongoing priority to help boost the city’s economy.

Choosing local suppliers, where possible, to purchase goods and services from is important to help deliver the Council’s “procurement” policy objectives.

The Council is the second-largest employer in the South Island and provides services and facilities for more than 380,000 residents.

Figures for the last financial year, which ended on June 30, 2020 show that 79 per cent of all Council procurement spending was with local businesses – defined as those who have an office either in Christchurch or Canterbury and employ local staff.

During the past year the Council dealt with 1174 local suppliers, 697 from the rest of New Zealand, and 106 international operators.

This pattern has been relatively consistent for the past three years.

Using local suppliers is one way to help strengthen the city and region’s economy and is particularly important in the tough economic times following the COVID-19 pandemic, says Council Head of Procurement and Contracts Jane O’Toole.

“As one of the region’s largest buyers our choice of goods, services and work has a big impact on our local communities. Our focus on supporting local businesses, when we can, was in place before the pandemic began but the policy is even more relevant now.

“Our procurement programme aims to use our spending to advance the social, cultural, environmental and economic well-being of Christchurch residents while also getting the best value for the city.”

Another high priority in procurement is long-term sustainability and the Council aims to work with companies that can show they are behaving in a way that reduces energy use and greenhouse gas emissions.

Some of the categories of procurement include road, water and traffic maintenance, security, construction, event services, plant and machinery hire and maintenance, sport and leisure equipment and park and other general maintenance.