The Federal Government has issued a tender for internet-based network connection services, in a whole-of-government procurement effort following on from a request for proposals back in March.
The Australian Government Information Management Office (AGIMO) issued the request for tender documents late last week.
The government originally put out the proposal looking for suppliers for the provision of internet-based network connections in March and has also issued a separate tender for mobile services and a Telecommunications Lifecycle Management Services panel.
In its documents last week it stipulated the exact nature of the internet services covered under the new tender, saying they related to services using the internet protocol suite travelling over a packet-switched public network and where the point of presence to the carrier's network was within Australia's borders. In addition, internet services as defined by AGIMO would not include dedicated point-to-point services.
The strategic objectives of the tender, which will provide services that most government agencies will be able to purchase, include cutting government telecommunications costs and improving price transparency through bulk purchasing, while maintaining flexibility for individual agencies.
The government is also looking to reduce the cost involved in the procurement process, as well as continuing to "support competition and innovation in the telecommunications industry".
The Federal Government, through AGIMO and its parent the Department of Finance and Deregulation, has pursued a number of similar technology purchasing initiatives over the past few months.
For example, it is also seeking datacentre services, with outgoing Finance Minister Lindsay Tanner outlining a 15-year plan for Canberra's $850 million annual datacentre needs going forward, and bulk purchasing to kick off later this year.
On 2 February the government issued a long-awaited $300 million to $400 million request for tender for desktop and laptop computers. It has also secured a similar arrangement for purchasing software and services from Microsoft.
AGIMO is planning to ink agreements with the successful internet services suppliers in November this year.