September 2017

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Linda Apelt becomes new Agent-General

Queensland’s new Agent-General Linda Apelt has taken up her role in TIQ’s London office.

Queensland’s new Agent-General Linda Apelt has taken up her role in TIQ’s London office, and is keen to start forging fresh business connections between the Sunshine State and Europe.

The Agent-General is the Queensland Government representative in the United Kingdom, and fosters trade and investment between Queensland and Europe.

Ms Apelt, a former long-serving director-general in various Queensland Government departments, said she was especially keen to promote Queensland as a filming destination.

‘In addition to continuing to promote commercial opportunities for trade and investment in Queensland, I would really like to strengthen the reputation of Queensland as a premier destination for investment in the screen industry,’ she said.

‘While Screen Queensland already has a strong reputation for attracting investment in screen from other regions, I can see there’s more potential to be tapped from the UK and European markets.’

Ms Apelt said she was also interested in connecting the state’s young start-ups to the opportunities likely to emerge post-Brexit.

‘I’m particularly keen to introduce young entrepreneurs across the creative arts and commercial sectors to business development opportunities in the UK and Europe.

‘It’s important to keep an eye on new opportunities, which will inevitably arise from Britain seeking new free trade agreements with trading partners post being part of the Single Market and Customs Union.’

Ms Apelt will also be responsible for liaison with the Royal Family and the Commonwealth Games Federation in the lead-up to the 2018 Gold Coast Commonwealth Games.

She has been appointed Agent-General for the next 18 months and is the first woman to serve in the role.

If you would like help promoting your product in Europe, connect with TIQ today.

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Hot DesQ talents head to Queensland

Twenty-eight of the world’s most innovative start-ups will bring their talents to Queensland following the latest round of Hot DesQ grants.

Twenty-eight of the world’s most innovative start-ups will bring their talents to Queensland following the latest round of Hot DesQ grants.

Hot DesQ is an Advance Queensland initiative where international and interstate entrepreneurs vie for $50,000–$100,000 in funding to relocate their ideas and business ventures to Queensland for at least six months.

Hot DesQ brings new entrepreneurs to Queensland to create new businesses and jobs, broaden international connections, and provide access to global markets and investors.

Announced in early September, Hot DesQ Round 2 recipients will come from the UK, Spain, Switzerland, Belgium, USA, Canada, Chile, New Zealand and Pakistan.

They include Hip Pocket from the USA, a fintech software company that creates apps to help people make better financial decisions. Hip Pocket will be based at Fishburners co-working space in Brisbane’s Queen Street Mall.

Others coming to Brisbane include Edoome, a Spanish company developing a social learning platform for teachers and students, and the UK’s Corilla, which is working on a collaborative authoring tool for technical writers.

Queensland’s regions will also benefit from Hot DesQ, with seven recipients based outside Brisbane. For example, Spain’s MedicSen, which develops wearable devices to predict disease, will be at the Innovation Centre at the Sunshine Coast University. They’ll be joined by Chile’s Turbulent, which uses simple hydropower turbines to enable individuals to generate renewable energy.

Other Hot DesQuers will be located in Ipswich, Toowoomba and Townsville.

Seven companies from New South Wales and Victoria have also received funding, including Aubot, which is building ‘accessible’ robots to help average people in their everyday lives. Aubot will be based at QUT’s Bluebox facility.

The Queensland Trade and Investment Strategy 2017–2022 aligns with Advance Queensland and recognises the importance of innovation to successful trade and investment.

The first Hot DesQ Round 2 recipients will arrive in Queensland this month.

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Jewels of Queensland sparkle in London

Precious Central Queensland gems and cutting-edge UK jewellery design came together at the Jewels of Queensland showcase last week.

Precious Central Queensland gems and cutting-edge UK jewellery design came together at the Jewels of Queensland showcase hosted by TIQ’s London office last week.

Jewels of Queensland featured boulder opals, sapphires and Central Queensland chrysoprase, crafted into exquisite contemporary pieces by a team of five young UK designers.

Designers involved were Chris Boland, Andrew English, Amanda Li Hope, Samira Jafari and Emily Thatcher.

The designers were commissioned by Ian Bone from Capricorn Gems, who works with CQ gemstone producers to promote and sell their products and profile their gems as ethically sourced.

Jewels of Queensland aimed to raise the profile of Queensland gems in the UK and European market by demonstrating the provenance of the stones to specialist buyers attending the event.

The exhibition ran for three evenings from 12 to 14 September in TIQ’s suites at Australia House in London.

Mr Bone said he hoped to hold more events in conjunction with TIQ.

International showcase events are one of the initiatives in the Queensland Trade and Investment Strategy 2017–2022.

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‘Happy to be here’ say migrant entrepreneurs

Brisbane offers a quality of life and business advantages hard to find in other big cities, say two business and skilled migrants.

Chairman of the TOMI Group, Mr Li Fusheng.

Brisbane offers a quality of life and business advantages hard to find in other big cities, say two business and skilled migrants who feature in new videos produced by TIQ.

Chairman of the TOMI Group, Mr Li Fusheng, brought his family and business from Beijing to Brisbane as a business migrant.

Mr Fusheng said Queensland offered a very good quality of life.

‘I chose Queensland because of very good weather, very good climate here, and also we found a very good school for my daughter,’ he said.

‘And also after we came here we found out the people are very friendly.’

Mr Fusheng said it also made business sense to choose Brisbane for the offices of TOMI Australia, which specialises in innovative medical technologies.

‘I think it’s just very efficient,’ he said.

‘We started from nothing but we set up everything in less than a month.

‘I don’t think in other big cities that we can enjoy such kind of advantage.’

Mr Fusheng was originally tossing up between Sydney and Melbourne, but a chance meeting with staff from TIQ’s Shanghai office pointed him towards Brisbane instead.

UK software developer Dr Darryl Woodford emigrated to Queensland as a skilled migrant sponsored by Business and Skilled Migration Queensland after completing a PhD at QUT.

He chose Brisbane having travelled the world as a data scientist.

‘Through academia I travelled quite a lot and so I knew that, compared to a lot of those other places, Queensland was a place where I was comfortable living, I enjoyed living and, obviously, through the time I had built up quite a network of people here.

‘Brisbane is also a place with a really strong start-up ecosystem.’

Mr Woodford said the immigration process was straightforward and efficient.

‘I had a migration agent who helped with the initial stage of the process, and then I prepared the statement for BSMQ and it was a fairly simple process from there,’ he said.

Mr Woodford’s company is doing well, specialising in translating social media into data form.

Likewise, Mr Fusheng is very positive about TOMI’s presence in Queensland.

‘We’re happy to be here,’ he said.

Attracting new business to Queensland is one of the objectives of the Queensland Trade and Investment Strategy 2017–2022.

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Asian market forum explores ASEAN success

Queensland will continue to reap economic benefits from the Asian century, with the state’s exports increasing rapidly and demand continuing to grow.

Members of the Chinese delegation visit Charters Towers on a pre-forum agricultural awareness mission.

Queensland will continue to reap economic benefits from the Asian century, with the state’s exports to ASEAN countries increasing rapidly and demand continuing to grow.

That was the key message from TIQ CEO Virginia Greville when she spoke to more than 100 attendees at this year’s JCU Asian Market Forum in Townsville on 8 September.

Ms Greville noted that key demands from Asia align with Queensland’s traditional strengths.

‘Queensland exported around $4.5 billion of merchandise to ASEAN nations in the latest financial year — a 28 per cent increase on the previous year,’ she said.

‘The main commodities enjoying increases in demand are fruit and vegetables, cotton, live cattle (of course), and coal.

‘Energy is also in high demand in the region, with interest in both gas and coal.’

Ms Greville said that investment dollars were also flowing from ASEAN countries into Queensland.

‘In July this year, Singapore’s Agrocorp International made a major investment in regional Queensland when it acquired Dalby’s Associated Grain,’ she said.

‘The acquisition will complement Agrocorp’s processing facilities around the world and deliver benefits to Queensland’s economy and agricultural sector.

‘This is a good example of how investment of this kind can provide mutual benefits for the investor and for Queensland.’

This year was the tenth anniversary of the JCU Asian Market Forum.

Before the forum, 25 Chinese delegates attended an agricultural awareness mission to the Atherton Tableland, Burdekin and Charters Towers, coordinated by the Department of Agriculture and Fisheries.

After the forum, members of the Chinese delegation met with North Queensland business groups in a business-matching session organised by TIQ.

The rise of Asia is the first of eight global megatrends identified in the Queensland Trade and Investment Strategy 2017–2022.

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International education awards launched

Entries are now open for Queensland’s inaugural IET Excellence Awards.

Entries are now open for Queensland’s inaugural IET Excellence Awards, which will recognise excellence in the multi-billion dollar international education and training (IET) sector.

The awards will promote best practice in international education and training, recognise those who contribute to the sector, and raise awareness of the benefits of international education to communities across Queensland.

Twelve awards in three champion categories and multiple subcategories will recognise individual excellence.

Categories are:

  • IET Excellence – Student (including metropolitan and regional subcategories for research, higher education, vocational education and training, schools, and ELICOS)
  • IET Excellence – Alumni
  • IET Excellence – Industry Champion.

Award winners will become ambassadors for Study Queensland, the Queensland Government’s IET web portal, and will help promote Queensland as a leading international student destination.

IET is Queensland’s second-largest services export after tourism. In 2016, it contributed $3.25 billion to the state’s economy and supported around 19,000 jobs.

The new awards are being run by TIQ’s International Education and Training Unit.

Nominations close 19 October, with winners announced at a ceremony in Brisbane on 23 November.

The awards are an initiative under the International Education and Training Strategy to Advance Queensland 2016–2026.

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Fine food showcase tempts Asian buyers

Ipswich is hosting a Queensland Fine Food Showcase for food buyers from China and Hong Kong who are in Australia searching for new gourmet products.

Ipswich is hosting a Queensland Fine Food Showcase for food buyers from China and Hong Kong who are in Australia searching for new gourmet products.

The Queensland Fine Food Showcase at Springfield features 20 Queensland companies who produce everything from honey and tofu to artisan bread, balsamic vinegar, and high-end health foods known as ‘functional foods’.

The buyers come from some of Asia’s largest supermarkets, ecommerce platforms, importers and food service companies, who are here for Fine Food Australia in Sydney in mid-September.

Chinese buyers visited Springfield for a one-day event last Thursday, while a second showcase will be held on Thursday 14 September for the Hong Kong contingent.

Treasurer and Minister for Trade and Investment Curtis Pitt said the buyers were seeking a wide variety of gourmet produce.

‘The Chinese buyers are specifically here looking for bakery products, snacks and confectionery, processed nuts, ice cream and desserts, beverages and processed and packaged food,’ he said.

‘Hong Kong has fewer import restrictions and the buyers are looking for seafood, meat, dairy and milk products as well as functional foods.’

A highlight of the first showcase was a visit to the Summer Land Camel Farm in the Scenic Rim, which produces a range of camel-milk cheeses, ice creams and artisanal skincare and soap products.

The Queensland Fine Food Showcase is an initiative of TIQ.

Fostering export growth is one of the priorities of the Queensland Trade and Investment Strategy 2017–2022.

If you think you have a product that could succeed in overseas markets, connect with TIQ today.

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Queensland export awards finalists announced

From skateboard manufacturers to wedding dress designers, our best exporters are named in the finalists for the 2017 Premier of Queensland’s Export Awards.

Staff from Grace Loves Lace and The Perfect Potion celebrate being finalists in the 2017 Premier of Queensland’s Export Awards.

Finalists in the 2017 Premier of Queensland’s Export Awards cover the gamut of the state’s best exporters, with businesses ranging from skateboard manufacturers to wedding dress designers making it into the final round.

Thirty-nine finalists in twelve award categories were announced at a ceremony in Brisbane on 7 September.

They highlight the diversity of Queensland’s top exporters.

Previous winners of the awards are well represented among this year’s finalists, with companies like Grace Loves Lace (2016 ecommerce winner), Blast Movement Technologies (2016 minerals and energy winner) and Cairns College of English & Business (2016 education and training winner) once again nominated in their categories.

Previous finalists also feature, with Evolve Skateboards — a manufacturing finalist last year —becoming a 2017 ecommerce finalist, and Populous Architecture once more a finalist in the creative industries category.

Plenty of new blood has also made it through, with companies like Wellcamp Airport, Perfect Potion and Frosty Boy Australia finalists this year.

The awards presentation dinner will be held on 19 October at the Brisbane Convention and Exhibition Centre.

The Premier of Queensland’s Export Awards are coordinated by the Export Council of Australia on behalf of TIQ.

Fostering export growth is one of the priorities of the Queensland Trade and Investment Strategy 2017–2022.

Read the full list of awards finalists.

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Dream results for Queensland aviation

Three major airline deals announced in recent weeks will deliver big benefits for Queensland’s aviation and tourism industries.

Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk and Treasurer Curtis Pitt join Qantas CEO Alan Joyce and others for the Dreamliner announcement.

Three major airline deals announced in recent weeks will deliver big benefits for Queensland’s aviation and tourism industries.

Late August saw the news that Brisbane would be home to the East Coast and Pacific Operations of Qantas’s newest aircraft, the Boeing 787-900 Dreamliner.

In early September, the Queensland Government announced that China’s Hainan Airlines would start twice-weekly direct flights between Shenzhen and Cairns. Soon afterwards came the news that China Eastern Airlines would increase its direct Shanghai-Brisbane flights to daily.

The three deals are part of a Queensland Government strategy to boost the Queensland economy by attracting international airlines and flights.

The Qantas plan to base four Dreamliners in Brisbane will create 120 local jobs for flight and cabin crew, along with 350 indirect jobs associated with the fleet operations here.

The new Dreamliners will also put Brisbane within range of direct flights to cities including Dallas, Las Vegas, Vancouver, Chicago and Seattle, opening up new markets for business and tourism.

The new Hainan flights are expected to bring up to 30,000 visitors to Cairns over the next two years, while China Eastern’s extra Shanghai-Brisbane flights should bring more than 120,000 new visitors over the next four years.

The Queensland Government has been instrumental in securing all three deals.

The government’s $10 million Attracting Aviation Investment Fund supports new or expanding airlines to bring more passengers to Queensland, while the $33.5 million Connecting with Asia Fund aims to increase the number of visitors from Asia.

The new flights are scheduled to begin before the end of 2017, and the first of the Brisbane-based Dreamliners is expected to arrive in mid-2018.

Tourism is one of the major export industries identified in the Queensland Trade and Investment Strategy 2017–2022.

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International students in regional Queensland

Queensland now has a higher percentage of English-language learners in regional locations than any other state, with the Sunshine Coast a popular regional destination for international students.

Treasurer Curtis Pitt at the official opening of the new Lexis Maroochydore campus with Sharon Curtiss and Ian Pratt from Lexis English

Queensland now has a higher percentage of English-language learners in regional locations than any other state, with the Sunshine Coast a popular regional destination for international students.

Sunshine Coast college Lexis English is part of the trend, recently opening a new campus close to the waterfront at Maroochydore.

Speaking at the opening of the new campus on 28 August, Treasurer and Minister for Trade and Investment Curtis Pitt said that Queensland was attracting more international students to regional locations.

‘I am pleased to report that we have record international student enrolments in Queensland — more than 111,000,’ he said.

‘Around one-quarter of those students are studying English.

‘And, importantly, Queensland also has the largest number of English language students studying outside the capital city.

‘Thirteen per cent of Queensland’s English language students study in a regional area outside of Brisbane, compared with a national average of seven per cent.’

Lexis began operating in 2004 at Noosa Heads, and has since expanded to Byron Bay, Brisbane, Perth and Maroochydore.

It has also opened two campuses in Korea and one in Japan in the past three years.

Owners Ian Pratt and his wife Yasuko now welcome around 8,000 international students each year into their schools, and employ around 240 people worldwide.

Mr Pitt said that international education and training was an important contributor to the Queensland economy.

‘In 2016, the industry contributed $3.25 billion to the state’s economy — making it the state’s second largest services export, behind only tourism,’ he said.

‘And the industry is a significant employer for the state, with an estimated 20,000 people employed.’

To learn more about Queensland’s initiatives in international education and training, download the International Education and Training Strategy to Advance Queensland 2016–2026.

You can also register now for the 2018 International Education and Training summit in Cairns.

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