We are committed to building strong partnerships with Indigenous peoples to create more opportunities for Indigenous businesses to succeed and grow.

In 2022-23, we exceeded the federal government's 5% mandate for Indigenous procurements, awarding 82 contracts directly to Indigenous firms and recorded an additional 12 subcontracts to Indigenous businesses for a total $65.6 million, equivalent to 9.8% of the total value of contract awards, to Indigenous companies.

Information Sessions for Indigenous Businesses

See below for free upcoming information sessions and networking opportunities for Indigenous businesses - your opportunity to learn about DND upcoming programs and to connect with the decision makers and contractors already delivering on projects.

  • Esquimalt
    January 25, 2024
    1 :00 p.m. – 4 :00 p.m.
    Songhees Wellness Centre Gym, 1100 Admiral Road, Victoria BC

For more information and to register, email

  • Cold Lake
    February 8, 2024
    1 :00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m.
    Military Family Resource Center, Building 674 Kingsway Road, Cold Lake, AB

For more information and to register, email

  • Bagotville
    February 29, 2024
    1 :00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m.
    Hotel Delta Saguenay, 2675, boulevard Du Royaume, Jonquière, Quebec

For more information and to register, email

  • Trenton

    March 20, 2024
    1:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m.
    CFB Trenton Officers’ Mess, 182 Yukon Street (Bldg 38), Trenton, Ontario

For more information and to register, email  

  • Ottawa

    March 20, 2024
    1:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m.
    Cartier Square Drill Hall, 2 Queen Elizabeth Driveway (parking available at Ottawa City Hall)

For more information and to register, email

Procurement Strategy for Indigenous Business (PSIB)

Procurement is a powerful catalyst for Indigenous economic growth.

The federal government’s Indigenous procurement strategy, known as the Procurement Strategy for Indigenous Business (PSIB), plays a key role in encouraging Indigenous businesses to contract with the federal government.

The PSIB capitalizes on the government’s current procurement needs to create opportunities to generate profits in Indigenous communities and bridge socioeconomic gaps by increasing Indigenous participation in procurement processes.

DCC primarily uses two PSIB approaches to maximize the value of contracts awarded to Indigenous businesses:

  • The Set-Aside Program for Indigenous Business within the Procurement Strategy for Indigenous Business (PSIB).
  • Indigenous Benefits Plans (IBPs), also known as the “Indigenous participation stream”
    • Typically for capital projects
    • The IBP means that a percentage of the value of a contract is subcontracted to Indigenous companies
    • The percentage of the IBP can be fixed or set for competition during the call for tenders.
Want to learn more? Invite DCC to make a presentation to your business or group!
  • Improve awareness of DCC, our services, mandate and values and how to access opportunities;
  • Highlight specific contract opportunities at Canadian Forces installations near your business;
  • Provide an overview of the electronic bidding process on MERX (DCC’s service provider for e-bidding);
  • Provide information on how to apply for a security clearance, and how to identify project security requirements in DCC’s tender documents;
  • Provide additional information about Federal government policies and programs to help Indigenous businesses grow and compete for Federal government opportunities.

For more information, please contact Martine Côté, Regional Service Line Leader, Contract Services Initiatives via email at

  • How to bid on contracts

    We advertise all procurement opportunities and distribute tender docs on MERX, an independent, private-sector tendering service.

    • Visit to view all of DCC’s current solicitations, or
    • Use the search function on and look for “Defence Construction Canada” or a particular project name.

    How does my company get a security clearance?

    Many DND projects have security requirements that require businesses to hold an organizational security clearance in order to be awarded a contract. DCC can help shepherd your company through the process.

    • Clearances are issued by Public Services and Procurement Canada’s (PSPC’s) Contract Security Program (CSP).
    • Contractors’ applications to the program can be sponsored by DCC through our Industrial Security Program (ISP).
    • Contractors can indicate on the application form that they are Indigenous-owned, which can fast-track the process.
  • Where to find our opportunties
  • Registration in the Indigenous Business Directory (IBD)

    The Directory is designed to help and support Indigenous businesses in their search for business opportunities, including federal procurement. This directory is a resource available to all government entities and the private sector to identify Indigenous businesses.

    The benefits of registering:

    • Fast and easy: It takes about 20 minutes to register.
    • Increased visibility: The Indigenous Business Directory (IBD) is a search engine available to private industry and the federal procurement community for identifying qualified Indigenous suppliers in a variety of sectors.
    • Partnership creation: You can use the IBD to seek out opportunities to form partnerships and joint ventures with other Indigenous businesses and identify potential subcontractors.
    • Stay informed: Businesses listed in the Directory are informed by ISC of upcoming local networking opportunities and other federal government news on Indigenous procurement.
    • No registration fee

    To qualify for a set-aside contract, your business must be registered in the Indigenous Business Directory (IBD) (

  • Eligibility for Federal Contracts

    To be eligible for federal government contracts, a business must meet the following eligibility criteria:

    • Be a sole proprietorship, limited liability company, cooperative, partnership or not-for-profit organization in which Indigenous people own and control at least 51% of the enterprise;
    • Be a joint venture in which one or more of the Indigenous companies defined above hold a controlling interest and at least 51% of shares. The Indigenous content of joint ventures must also correspond to at least 33% of the total value of the work to be performed;

    For more information, see: Indigenous Business Directory (IBD) ( or Learn how federal Indigenous procurement works ( for more details about the requirements.

  • Contract Security Requirements

    Some federal contracts include security requirements for your business. Understanding what a business needs to do to meet these criteria before submitting a bid will help mitigate any potential obstacles.

    DCC is a federally approved source that can help you meet the security requirements for your business. See the following section for more details:

  • Permit and License Search
  • Partners - Indigenous Services Canada
    • Indigenous Services Canada (ISC) works collaboratively with partners to improve access to high quality services for First Nations, Inuit and Métis
    • Fosters the growth of a strong Indigenous business sector in Canada and addresses strategic needs by providing access to capital and strategic support to Indigenous entrepreneurs, businesses and national economic development organizations
    • Acts as a catalyst for partnerships between federal departments, the provinces, the private sector and Indigenous communities to increase Indigenous participation in complex economic development opportunities across Canada

    For more details, see: Indigenous Services Canada –

  • Corporate Goods and Services

    Across DCC, we make efforts to include Indigenous suppliers for consideration when sourcing goods and services to support our corporate activities.

  • Frequently Asked Questions

    To whom does the PSIB apply?

    The PSIB applies to all federal government departments and agencies. The aim is to increase the number of contracts signed with Indigenous businesses.

    Which businesses meet the PSIB criteria?

    The PSIB is available to all Indigenous businesses, whether incorporated or not. The term “business” means a sole proprietorship, limited liability company, cooperative, partnership or non-profit organization.

    To qualify as an Indigenous business, a business must meet the following criteria:

    • the business is at least 51% owned and managed by Indigenous people;
    • at least one-third of employees are Indigenous, if the business has six or more full-time employees.

    If a business forms a joint venture or joins a consortium, a share equivalent to at least 51% of the joint venture or consortium must be owned and managed by one or more Indigenous businesses, as mentioned above.

    How do bidders prove that they meet the PSIB criteria?

    When a business responds to a call for tenders under the PSIB, it must complete and return a duly signed Certification of Requirements for the Set-Aside Program for Indigenous Business form (Appendix A).

    Does registration in the Indigenous Business Directory (IBD) guarantee that an Indigenous business will win a contract with DCC?

    No. Registering your business does not guarantee a government contract. This database is a useful tool for government buyers and other interested parties looking for Indigenous businesses able to supply the goods and services they need. A business’ listing in this directory certainly gives it greater visibility, but it should be seen as just one step among many in its marketing plan.

    How do the PSIB set-asides work?

    When a contract is set aside for competition among PSIB-linked Indigenous businesses, DCC will indicate this in its tender advertisement.

    Indigenous businesses prepare and submit bids, which are evaluated according to the federal government’s usual contracting principles of fairness, transparency and best value for the Crown.

    Is it possible to have a sole-source contract with the PSIB?

    No. Sole-source contracts are used only when it is not in the public interest to call for tenders, or when there is only one person or company capable of carrying out the contract. The PSIB set-aside process usually requires a competitive process between Indigenous businesses.

    Should an Indigenous business look for opportunities to form joint ventures?

    Pooling resources with other Indigenous or non-Indigenous businesses (contractors, consultants) is often an excellent option when bidding or performing a contract.

    Can an Indigenous business that wins a contract subcontract part of the work to a non-Indigenous business?

    Yes. However, at least 33% of the total value of the work performed under the contract must be carried out by an Indigenous business.

    For more details:

    Do Indigenous businesses have to provide bid securities when bidding for contracts?

    Each procurement is dealt with separately, so you will need to read the Instructions to Bidders to find out whether or not you need to provide a bid security.

    If we have any questions during the tendering process, who can we contact?

    You must contact the contact person identified in the Merx ad, who will be able to answer your questions.

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