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Since 2012, the Department of Home Affairs (the department) has been responsible for the procurement of garrison support and welfare services functions for the RPCs and the establishment and ongoing management of associated contractual arrangements. Garrison support includes security, cleaning and catering services. Welfare services include individualised care to maintain health and well-being, such as recreational and educational activities.

The department’s estimate of the total cost of regional processing arrangements in Nauru and Papua New Guinea, since establishment, is $7085.14 million.

Implementation of the Australian Government’s policies on offshore detention of refugees and asylum seekers over the last ten years has cost billions of dollars. The operation of RPCs have been a subject of substantial parliamentary and public interest. The ANAO’s two previous audit reports into the department’s management of offshore garrison support and welfare contracts identified a range of shortcomings and deficiencies. Since the tabling of the audit reports, the department has entered into further contracts totalling in excess of $1 billion; and it is timely to assess whether the department has improved its procurement and performance management processes.

The audit objective was to assess whether the Department of Homes Affairs has appropriately managed the procurement of garrison support and welfare services for offshore processing centres in Nauru and PNG (Manus Island).


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Auditor-General Report No.37 2019–20