The Bundaberg Region business community gained valuable insights into trade and investment opportunities at Council's August Bundaberg Business Breakfast.
The theme of the event was how trade, investment, tourism and events align for regional prosperity.
Attendees heard from Tourism and Events Queensland Acting Group Executive Matthew Bron, Bundaberg Tourism CEO Katherine Reid and Trade and Investment Queensland (TIQ) CEO Justin McGowan.
Justin McGowan spoke to attendees about the assistance the Queensland Government body could provide to businesses wanting to export products or attract international investment.
Justin said the Bundaberg Region held an important place in Queensland’s export economy, with the region producing 47.5% of agricultural, forestry and fishing exports and 25% of manufacturing exports.
“Bundaberg does a lot of heavy lifting in exports for Queensland,” he said.
“It’s quite unique, that Bundaberg has everything from agriculture to manufacturing to tourism, so that helps the region weather economic shocks.
“The fact that we are seeing so many people move into the region is a good thing, the fact that we are still making things here is a really good thing.
“You’ve got this great kind of brand export through Bundaberg Brewed Drinks, so everyone knows about Bundy.
“Brand recognition is really strong, I think that helps put Bundaberg on the map.”
In addition to a strong potential for export, Justin said the combination of good local business talent, fertile productive lands and a great tourism story made the region attractive to overseas investors.
Justin said the region could build on successive large overseas investments in the citrus and macadamia industries, with further growth potential in agriculture and manufacturing.
“A new project that is being looked at is sustainable aviation fuel,” he said.
“As all nations around the world try to decarbonise their economies, I think it’s a good news story for Bundaberg in terms of providing that feedstock that can then be transferred into green energy, or green fuels.”
Justin said, even if businesses don’t feel they are currently export-ready, TIQ could support businesses to work towards that goal.
“Just get in touch and we connect them to a sector specialist and then just talk them through,” he said.
“They might not be export ready themselves here, but they could potentially partner with others to be a part of their supply chain that ultimately is exported.
“That's why I think no one should rule themselves out as not being ready.
“Come and have the conversation first.”
TIQ offer grants of assistance through their ‘Go Global’ program, aimed at providing small and medium-sized enterprises businesses expert advice on breaking into new export markets.
They also hold market briefings and TIQ Trade Commissioner events in the Bundaberg Region throughout the year, as well as events which focus on investment opportunities.
TIQ’s next event in Bundaberg is a Vietnam market briefing in early September.
Contact TIQ’s Principal Trade and Investment Officers for Bundaberg for more details about their coming events.
Find out more about Bundaberg Regional Council’s business events and subscribe for updates here.