January 2020

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Social media star and firefighters unite for Taiwan bushfire benefit

Over TWD$1 million was raised in less than 3 hours last week at a special bushfire appeal in Taipei, which brought together supporters ranging from a Taiwanese social media star to local firefighters and a who’s who of Taiwanese business.

Over TWD$1 million was raised in less than 3 hours last week at a special bushfire appeal in Taipei, which brought together supporters ranging from a Taiwanese social media star to local firefighters and a who’s who of Taiwanese business.

Organised by TIQ Taiwan in conjunction with the Australia and New Zealand Chamber of Commerce in Taipei, Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade, and Austrade, the event highlighted the strength of the Queensland-Taiwan connection.

Taiwanese/Australian actress and social media star Hannah Quinlivan, who has family on Queensland’s Gold Coast, promoted the event to her more than 2.3 million social media followers.

Ms Quinlivan is married to Taiwanese pop superstar Jay Chou, with the pair one of the country’s best-known showbusiness couples.

Ms Quinlivan’s social media posts promoting the appeal, which featured video from the Currumbin Wildlife Hospital Foundation, received over 350,000 views.

Ms Quinlivan and the Mayor of New Taipei City also signed copies of a calendar featuring Taiwanese and Australian firefighters, which was auctioned at the event.

Queensland Trade and Investment Commissioner for Taiwan Patrick Hafenstein said TIQ was proud to support the appeal, which demonstrated the close bond between Queensland and Taiwan.

‘We were proud to support the event in any way we could,’ he said.

‘That ranged from obtaining the video from the Currumbin Wildlife Hospital Foundation for Hannah’s social media posts and sourcing the calendars for auctioning from the Australian Firefighters Calendar company on the Gold Coast, to inviting clients along to the event itself.

‘On the night, we really saw the strength of the personal, community and business relationships between Queensland and Taiwan.

‘We had Taiwanese people in the room who had been to Queensland for work, study or holidays, some for shorter and some for longer periods, but they had all created true lifelong connections.

‘And those connections translated into real generosity.’

Significant donations were received on the night from a range of high-profile Taiwanese businesses, including a number with Queensland connections invited by TIQ.

These included Yuteh Private School (the only Queensland-recognised school in Taiwan), Eslite Hotel (managed by a former Queensland working holidaymaker) and Taishin Bank (which has a branch in Brisbane with major investments in Australia).

All funds raised from the appeal will go to the Red Cross to support recovery efforts for the unprecedented bush fires in Australia.

The event was held at Little Creatures Taipei on 16 January 2020.

TIQ Taiwan is one of TIQ’s 16 international offices promoting Queensland trade and investment in 12 markets around the world.

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Bundaberg’s Grillex going global with new $3m facility

A new $3 million facility for Bundaberg barbecue manufacturer Grillex will help them expand into additional overseas markets, supported by the Queensland Government’s Jobs and Regional Growth Fund.

A new $3 million facility for Bundaberg barbecue manufacturer Grillex will help them expand into additional overseas markets, supported by the Queensland Government’s Jobs and Regional Growth Fund.

Grillex (formerly Unisite Group) designs and produces a wide variety of outdoor infrastructure, including electric barbeques, street and park furniture, and shelters.

The company already exports to a number of countries, but is keen to increase production capacity to take on additional markets.

The new facility, to be based at Kensington industrial area near Bundaberg Airport, will include a 2,680 square metre warehouse and office complex, and an assembly line with the latest in manufacturing technologies.

Grillex General Manager Martin Rowland said the company was excited to start a new growth phase after recent work to streamline and futureproof business operations through lean manufacturing principles.

‘We started in the playground equipment industry, but after reaching a leadership position in that space we became proactive with research and development into new product lines, targeting our customer base of local governments, education providers, tourist parks and private enterprises,’ Mr Rowland said.

‘Our current team of 25 staff have worked hard to get us to this point, where in addition to supplying the domestic market we currently export to New Zealand, Fiji and Dubai, and are now looking to expand into European markets.’

TIQ Bundaberg and TIQ’s international team have worked with Grillex over a number of years to explore opportunities in both the UK and USA.

Minister for State Development and Manufacturing Cameron Dick said investment in the new facility would help accelerate the company’s expansion by 2 years, providing further economic stimulation and employment for the Wide Bay region.

‘Grillex is a great local success story: a family-owned business founded in 2006 that has grown to become one of Australia’s leading providers of outdoor community and leisure products,’ Mr Dick said.

‘Fifteen new jobs will be supported through this expansion, including manufacturing and technical jobs on the production line, as well as roles in sales, management and administration.

‘The new site build will commence shortly and is expected to support around 30 local construction jobs over a 12-month period.’

The Queensland Government’s $175 million Jobs and Regional Growth Fund aims to help businesses grow throughout regional Queensland, with applications for funding accepted throughout the year.

Helping regional businesses to succeed in new export markets is a priority of the Queensland Trade and Investment Strategy 2017–2022.

For advice and support to export your product, connect with TIQ today.

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Queensland records decade-high growth in international ed

Queensland’s international education sector posted decade-high growth in 2018–19 to inject $5.38 billion into the state, new data from the Australian Bureau of Statistics shows.

Queensland’s international education sector posted decade-high growth in 2018–19 to inject $5.38 billion into the state, new data from the Australian Bureau of Statistics shows.

The value of international education and training rose 16% – a post-GFC benchmark for Queensland – in the 12 months to 1 July.

This eclipsed the state’s 8% average yearly increase over the last decade, and was better than both the 15% national increase and the 14% growth recorded by New South Wales, Australia’s largest international education market.

TIQ’s Study Queensland team plays a key role in promoting Queensland’s world-class education and training to potential students around the world.

Ministerial Champion for International Education and Training Kate Jones said the sector was going from strength to strength, delivering benefits to students and communities across Queensland.

‘Queensland is unique – 1 in 3 international students are enrolled outside Brisbane, which is great for communities right throughout our regions,’ she said.

‘Schools, colleges and universities aren’t the only organisations to benefit.

‘When students come to study in Queensland, the flow-on benefits are great.

‘Our strategy to expand this sector, along with global demand for high-quality education, means student numbers will continue to grow in the future.’

Queensland – like other Australian states – draws its highest numbers of international students from China and India, but is also seeing significant growth in emerging markets.

For example, federal Department of Education figures for January–October 2019 show that the number of Colombian students enrolled in Queensland rose to 6,835 , up 19% on the same period the previous year, while the number of students from the Philippines more than doubled to 3,826.

‘Queensland’s appeal is far-reaching on the international stage,’ said Ms Jones.

‘We’re aggressively marketing Queensland throughout Asia and the sub-continent to make sure our state is best placed to capitalise on the demand for education.’

International education and training is identified as one of Queensland’s most important services exports in the Queensland Trade and Investment Strategy 2017–2022.

Study Queensland offers a range of grants and other programs to support, develop and promote Queensland’s international education and training sector.

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ATMAC grants open for ag exporters

Queensland agricultural exporters and organisations helping to facilitate agricultural exports are invited to apply for grants under the Agricultural Trade and Market Access Cooperation (ATMAC) Program.

Queensland agricultural exporters and organisations have until 31 January to apply for a grant from the Agricultural Trade and Market Access Cooperation (ATMAC) Program.

ATMAC grants are coordinated by the federal Department of Agriculture and support projects that contribute to Australia’s agricultural trade with overseas markets.

The grants range from $20,000 to $400,000.

Projects must open, improve and/or maintain access to overseas markets for Australian agricultural products by building stronger relationships with trading partners, neighbouring countries and international organisations.

Priorities in this round of funding include helping to realise market access opportunities under recently ratified free trade agreements.

To be eligible to apply for an ATMAC grant, you must be a:

  • company
  • incorporated association
  • Indigenous corporation
  • local government
  • corporate state or territory entity
  • non-corporate state or territory entity
  • non-corporate state or territory statutory authority
  • partnership
  • corporate Commonwealth entity
  • non-corporate Commonwealth statutory authority
  • Commonwealth company
  • cooperative
  • international entity
  • sole trader
  • statutory entity
  • trustee on behalf of a trust.

To learn more or to apply, visit the ATMAC homepage. Applications close Friday 31 January.

Agriculture is identified as one of Queensland’s export strengths in the Queensland Trade and Investment Strategy 2017–2022.

For advice on exporting your agricultural products to overseas markets, connect with TIQ today.

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Brazilian cows to get earful of Queensland ingenuity

Brazilian cattle will soon be wearing smart ear tags developed by Queensland company Ceres Tag, giving South American farmers the ability to track cows’ movement and health wherever they are.

Brazilian cattle will soon be wearing smart ear tags developed by Queensland company Ceres Tag, giving South American farmers the ability to track cows’ movement and health wherever their herds may roam.

Ceres Tag has signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) with Brazilian company LeBov, which specialises in software that can analyse the information gathered by the ear tags.

The MOU will give Ceres Tag access to Brazil’s livestock herd – one of the largest in the world, with more than 230 million head of cattle spread across the country’s wide-open plains.

The MOU is the result of negotiations over the past year, with TIQ staff in Brisbane and Latin America advising Ceres Tag on Brazil’s business culture, providing language support in market, and introducing the company to local partners.

Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk said the MOU was an exciting step forward into an overseas market for Ceres Tag.

‘This is an exciting development for Ceres Tag following the success of a trial in North Queensland,’ Ms Palaszczuk said.

‘Ceres Tag’s technology is a perfect fit for the Brazilian cattle industry because their farmers face the same challenges as Queensland graziers – tracking cattle across such vast areas of land.’

The smart ear tags feature GPS tracking, accelerometers to measure movement (and help determine overall health), temperature monitoring, Bluetooth and radio-frequency identification.

The information from each tag can then be collected, and each cow’s data sent to a central database for analysis.

Farmers can check not only the location and movement of their cattle, but also their health – including when they are ready for breeding. Tagging can also reduce the chance of theft.

The technology is a joint initiative between Ceres Tag, the Queensland Government, James Cook University and the CSIRO.

Ceres Tag signed the MOU with Le Bov in Brazil in late 2019.

TIQ will continue to work with Ceres Tag to help them identify, explore and access new export markets.

Agtech is identified as an emerging export strength for Queensland in the Queensland Trade and Investment Strategy 2017–2022.

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Europe visit a high-energy event for Governor

Hydrogen and other renewable energy sources were high on the Queensland Governor’s agenda during a recent trip to the Netherlands and the UK arranged by TIQ.

Hydrogen and other renewable energy sources were high on the Queensland Governor’s agenda during a recent trip to the Netherlands and the UK arranged by TIQ.

His Excellency the Honourable Paul de Jersey AC, Governor of Queensland, visited late last year to strengthen Queensland’s strong bilateral ties and promote trade and investment priorities.

The Governor’s first stop was the Netherlands, where he attended a hydrogen roundtable hosted by the Australian Ambassador to the Netherlands, Matthew Neuhaus.

During the roundtable he promoted Queensland’s hydrogen strategy and engaged with representatives from the Office of the Netherlands Hydrogen, the Ministry of Economic Affairs, and companies as such Royal Dutch Shell.

Mr de Jersey also visited the European headquarters of Queensland company Tritium, a global leader in fast-charging solutions for electric vehicles and the Premier of Queensland’s Exporter of the Year 2018.

He was given a tour of Tritium’s facilities and charging test bays, and learnt about their 2019 achievements, which include deals to supply:

  • a further 120 Ionity sites with up to 6 of the company’s flagship Veefil high-power chargers per site
  • Drive Energi’s planned 2,500 sites across the UK.

Queensland Trade and Investment Commissioner for Europe and Queensland Agent-General in the UK Linda Apelt said the meetings reflected Queensland’s growing focus on renewable energy.

‘Queensland is a world-leading energy supplier, and our work in renewable hydrogen production will help us maintain that lead,’ Ms. Apelt said.

‘Electric vehicles are also a growing trend worldwide.’

Ms Apelt said the Governor also discussed other market opportunities across a range of sectors.

‘We are also exploring opportunities for further trade and investment with the UK in areas such as fintech, green finance, smart cities initiatives, cyber security and impact investment.

‘I’m sure Queensland will be reaping the rewards from the Governor’s visits.’

As Patron of the Queensland Ballet and Queensland Symphony Orchestra, the Governor and Mrs de Jersey also attended a ballet recital by Leanne Benjamin AM OBE at Australia House, which was sponsored by Queensland company and 2019 Australian Exporter of the Year Populous, Study Queensland and Australian florist Roses Only.

The event was a celebration of cultural and creative activity, which contributed $111.7 billion to Australia’s economy in 2016–17.

Queensland talent features in some of London’s most renowned arts institutions and venues at the highest levels across various artistic genres. TIQ Europe has helped to promote a number of of Queensland creative organisations, including Erub Arts from the state’s far north, which took its Caught in the Net art exhibition to London’s JGM Gallery in August last year.

Promoting Queensland exports is a priority of the Queensland Trade and Investment Strategy 2017–2022.

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Gut instinct: Microba named in top 25 start-ups

Brisbane-based bioscience company Microba has been recognised as one of the world’s top 25 science-based start-ups by Germany’s Falling Walls Foundation.

Brisbane-based bioscience company Microba has been recognised as one of the world’s top 25 science-based start-ups by Germany’s Falling Walls Foundation.

Microba provides clients with access to cutting-edge technology for gut microbiome analysis.

The accolade came at the Falling Walls conference in Berlin late last year, where Microba pitched its Metagenomic Analysis Platform (MAPTM) to more than 750 industry leaders, decision-makers and media representatives.

Microba CEO Blake Wills said it was an honour to pitch at the event, and to be named among the world’s best science start-ups.

‘Being invited to pitch at the event was certainly a highlight of what’s been a great year for us,’ Mr Wills said.

‘Being recognised as one of the world’s top 25 science start-ups is exceptionally pleasing.

‘It was an excellent opportunity to present to such a highly regarded group.’

Falling Walls is a German-based foundation that gives academics, entrepreneurs and other professionals an opportunity to present their research, business model, innovation or initiative to a distinguished audience from academia and business.

Last year was a big one for Microba, which is a world leader in high-resolution analysis of the gut microbiome.

In March, the company partnered with Korean-based Macrogen to develop new microbiome services in offshore markets and, in October, announced a partnership with US company Psomagen to deliver gut-analysis technology to the US market.

October also saw Microba winning the 2019 Lord Mayor’s Innovation Award and travelling to San Francisco to join the FAST accelerator program at the California Life Sciences Institute, coordinated by TIQ and Life Sciences Queensland.

‘While we’re continuing to make an impact in our global partnerships, Microba is also recognised as the key microbiome company in Australia,’ Mr Wills said.

‘We’ve helped more than 8,000 Australians understand more about their gut microbiome.’

Queensland Trade and Investment Commissioner for North America Viki Forrest said Microba’s recognition at Falling Walls was well deserved.

‘We’ve worked with Microba for a number of years and their innovations are globally significant,’ she said.

‘We supported their entry to the FAST program to help them enter the US market, and we’re already seeing that starting to bear fruit.

‘I’m sure we’ll be hearing a lot more about this Queensland company.’

In January, Microba representatives will return to San Francisco with other Queensland participants to complete the final stage of the FAST program.

They will also attend the BIO International Convention in San Diego in June.

Microba was not the only successful Queenslander at the Berlin Falling Walls event, with University of Queensland researcher Rhys Pirie taking out the top prize of Young Innovator of the Year.

The life sciences sector is identified as one of Queensland’s emerging export strengths in the Queensland Trade and Investment Strategy 2017–2022.

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Happy new year from TIQ

As 2020 dawns, the TIQ team is looking forward to another exciting year of connecting Queensland business to the world, and the world to Queensland.

As 2020 dawns, the TIQ team is looking forward to another exciting year of connecting Queensland business to the world, and the world to Queensland.

A key part of our work is promoting Queensland at trade and investment events at home and overseas. These events are ideal opportunities to showcase Queensland’s world-class products and engage with potential partners from around the world.

Events we’re looking forward to this year include Food and Hotel Asia in Singapore in March; Energy, Mines and Money in Brisbane in June, and the extraordinary Expo 2020 Dubai in October …

TIQ will have a presence at all of these events, and many more.

And, at every one, we’ll be connecting Queensland communities to global opportunities.

To learn more, see our full events calendar and make 2020 the year that you connect with TIQ.

December 2019

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Season’s greetings from TIQ

Season’s greetings to all our wonderful Queensland exporters and our global partners – thank you for your trade and investment achievements throughout 2019. Because of you, communities around the world can enjoy Queensland’s world-class products 365 days a year.

Season’s greetings to all our wonderful Queensland exporters and our global partners – thank you for your trade and investment achievements throughout 2019.

Because of you, communities around the world can enjoy Queensland’s world-class products 365 days a year.

And, as many countries celebrate a period of feasting, Queensland’s gourmet produce may well be on the table. In 2019, we exported:

  • more than $175 million worth of seafood – including prawns, crabs and lobsters
  • more than $334 million worth of fruit and nuts – including mangoes, melons and macadamias
  • around $15 million worth of alcoholic beverages – including wine to China, beer to New Zealand and gin to the UK!

Queensland creations are also part of the gift-giving in many countries. In 2019, more than $60 million worth of games and sporting goods left Queensland for overseas markets, including the USA, UK and UAE.

We look forward to working with all our partners in 2020 – connecting Queensland business to the world, and the world to Queensland.

TIQ’s 9 Queensland offices and 16 overseas offices will close for varying periods over the holiday season. You can contact any TIQ office during the holiday period using our online enquiry form, and one of our team will respond when the office reopens.

Read the full list of office closure dates.

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Season’s greetings from TIQ Europe

A festive-season chat with Queensland Trade and Investment Commissioner –Europe and Queensland Agent-General in the UK, Linda Apelt

Linda Apelt

A festive-season chat with Queensland Trade and Investment Commissioner – Europe and Queensland Agent-General in the UK, Linda Apelt

How is the festive season celebrated in your region, which extends across Europe and into Africa?
The festive season brings joy, light and festivity, especially as the cool winters of the northern hemisphere set in and the year comes to an end. Many of the Judeo-Christian traditions of Christmas have their heritage in the region. This has extended to wider regions we support such as Africa but, as our multicultural and multifaith region expands and evolves, the spirit and values of the season are the most important aspects.

In Europe, ‘Christmas’ lasts much longer than a day. The season stretches across December and into January, incorporating many holy days and festivities. For countries like Germany and Sweden, the season’s main event is Christmas Eve, celebrated with midnight mass and a festive meal. Others focus more on Christmas Day, with gift-giving, feasting and, in the UK, many gathering at 3pm to hear the Queen’s Christmas message. New Year’s Eve and Day are also important – don’t miss Hogmanay in Scotland or eating 12 green grapes at the stroke of midnight in Spain!

What were some standout achievements for your office in 2019?
A highlight was the 2019 Queensland Day Reception, which celebrated the 160th Queensland Day in the presence of Minister Cameron Dick with 350 VIP guests. We were able to showcase Queensland companies such as Mount Uncle Distillery, Great Barrier Beer, Full Circle Fibres and Jewels of Queensland. We also supported 5 successful trade missions to the European market, helped Queensland company Graham’s Natural Alternative crack the UK skincare market, celebrated 2018 Queensland Exporter of the Year Tritium expanding rapidly in Europe, and facilitated a number of investment deals into Queensland. Cultural activities like the Leanne Benjamin ballet recital, which was held in the presence of the Queensland Governor, are also wonderful opportunities to showcase Queensland’s creative industries and create connections with high-level UK guests.

What are you most looking forward to in 2020?
Promoting Queensland’s Hydrogen Strategy to European companies keen to enter or expand their footprint in this new and exciting sector. Supporting Queensland’s 2032 Olympic Games bid, and developing Queensland House as an exciting landing pad for Queensland exporters. And, hopefully, a resolution to Brexit, one way or the other!

Any new year’s message you’d like to share with Queensland exporters?
We’ve enjoyed supporting some fantastic Queensland exporters to successfully enter Europe this year. 2020 is shaping up to be another interesting year, with some potentially significant geopolitical changes likely to present opportunities in Europe for our Queensland exporters. Do contact TIQ Europe if you’d like to know more.