October 2019

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Defence Supply Chain Hub for Townsville

A $5 million Defence Supply Chain Hub will be established in an innovative new industry precinct in the Townsville CBD.

A $5 million Defence Supply Chain Hub will be established in an innovative new industry precinct in the Townsville CBD.

The hub will be located in the Smart Precinct North Queensland in Palmer Street, and will operate as a one-stop shop for advice and expertise on regional supply chain logistics as well as maintenance.

Townsville Mayor Jenny Hill said a defence hub in the new precinct would help North Queensland businesses tap into overseas and national defence projects.

‘The defence industries sector is growing quickly and establishing a national and international reputation for excellence, so the hub is going to tap into that rapid growth,’ she said.

‘We are pleased to partner with the Palaszczuk Government to deliver this hub which will act as a catalyst for more jobs in advanced manufacturing.’

The new precinct is a collaborative project that already includes Townsville City Council, Burdekin Shire Council, Hinchinbrook Shire Council, James Cook University, CQUniversity, DevNQ and Coder Dojo.

Minister for State Development Cameron Dick said 2 staff had already been appointed to the hub to work with local businesses and defence-industry stakeholders to help North Queensland businesses become defence-ready.

‘Queensland’s defence industries employ more than 6,500 people and generated an estimated $6.3 billion in revenue in 2015–16,’ Mr Dick said.

‘Through consultation with Townsville businesses, we have determined the key focus for the region and the services that local industry needs.

‘The Townsville hub will focus on research and development, training and simulated services, aerospace platform deep maintenance, vehicle and maritime sustainment and logistics and garrison support.’

The Townsville Defence Supply Chain Hub is a key action of the Queensland Government’s Defence Industries 10-Year Roadmap and Action Plan, which aims to significantly grow the state’s defence industries.

Key achievements so far include the decision by German defence giant Rheinmetall to establish a $170 million Military Vehicle Centre of Excellence at Redbank.

Rheinmetall’s Queensland presence has opened up a variety of supply-chain opportunities for local manufacturers, which are being supported by TIQ.

One of the first businesses to take advantage of these opportunities has been Meadowbrook metal fabricator Frontline Manufacturing, which worked with TIQ Ipswich and TIQ Europe as part of a strategy to access Rheinmetall’s global supply chain.

The Queensland Government signed a memorandum of understanding with Smart Precinct North Queensland to establish the Townsville Defence Supply Chain Hub on 3 September.

The defence and aerospace sector is identified as one of Queensland’s growing export priorities in the Queensland Trade and Investment Strategy 2017–2022.


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Trisco Foods named Queensland Exporter of the Year

A family-owned food manufacturing business from Brisbane has been named the Premier of Queensland’s Exporter of the Year 2019.

A family-owned food manufacturing business from Carole Park has been named the Premier of Queensland’s Exporter of the Year 2019.

Trisco Foods is owned by the Tristram family, which has been manufacturing food and beverage products in Queensland since 1875.

The company produces world-class food ingredients, such as syrups and flavourings, which are used by leading food companies in Australia and overseas.

Trisco has been exporting for many years and has a strong presence throughout Asia. This year it also opened a factory in Colorado Springs to service demand in the USA.

Trisco was one of 16 Queensland businesses named winners at the Premier of Queensland’s Export Awards Gala in Brisbane on 10 October.

Speaking after accepting the award, Trisco’s Vice President of Sales and Marketing, Mark Halloran, said it was great to see the company’s team recognised for their hard work.

‘Winning the Exporter of the Year Award at the Premier of Queensland’s Export Awards is quite a shock, to be honest,’ he said.

‘But … we’ve done the hard work and all that goes into the export area of our business.

‘It’s very rewarding for the team.’

Mr Halloran also thanked TIQ for its support.

‘Trade and Investment Queensland has been intimately involved in a number of markets we’re now selling products into,’ he said.

‘The team at TIQ has been very supportive, helpful and professional.’

This year’s awards again demonstrated the diversity of Queensland’s export sector, with other winners including Circa Contemporary Circus (Creative Industries), Ryan Aerospace (Small Business), Australian Language Schools (International Education and Training) and beef producer Mort & Co (Agribusiness, Food and Beverages Award).

Winners also came from diverse locations, with regional business from the Gold Coast to Cairns taking out 8 of the awards.

The Tristram family is well known by older Queenslanders as the name behind one of the state’s most popular soft drinks and the marketing slogan ‘Say Tristrams Please’.

The brand and soft drink business was sold to Cadbury Schweppes in 1970 when Trisco Foods began and the family started to concentrate on the ingredients business.

Queensland has around 7,300 goods-exporting companies, which sold $87 billion worth of goods to the world last financial year.

Winners in the national categories at the Queensland awards will now go on to compete in the Australian Export Awards in Canberra in December.

Visit the awards website for more information on all the winners.

Winners – Premier of Queensland’s Export Awards 2019

Queensland award categories:

  • Premier of Queensland’s Exporter of the Year: Trisco Foods
  • Dermot McManus Awards for Innovation: Clipchamp
  • Richard Joel Award for the Defence Industry: ImmersaView
  • Tom Burns Award for Women in International Business: Kim Parascos, CEO, iVolve Industrial Technology

National award categories:

  • Agribusiness, Food and Beverages: Mort & Co
  • Creative Industries: Circa Contemporary Circus
  • E-Commerce: Knotwood
  • Emerging Exporter: Natural Evolution
  • International Education and Training: Australian Language Schools
  • International Health: Trisco Foods
  • Manufacturing and Advanced Materials: Alpha-H
  • Minerals, Energy and Related Services: International Mill Relines
  • Professional Services: Populous
  • Regional Exporter: HeliMods
  • Small Business: Ryan Aerospace
  • Sustainability: Envirotech Education
  • Technology and Innovation: AKIPS
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Bilingual grad boosts macadamia exports

A Chinese national who completed university studies in Queensland is now helping a Wide Bay-based macadamia producer leverage export opportunities to her homeland.

A Chinese national who completed university studies in Queensland is now helping a Wide Bay-based macadamia producer leverage export opportunities to her homeland.

Flora Zhang has used her post-graduate studies to help Bundaberg-based Macadamias Australia successfully export bulk and retail commodities to China.

Now working as the Export Marketing and Business Development Co-ordinator for Macadamias Australia, Ms Zhang completed a Graduate Diploma of Applied Law (Major in International Trade) at Queensland University of Technology last year.

She has been invited by the Australia China Business Council (ACBC) to address a Brisbane forum on 10 October where other Queensland businesses can learn how to tap into local bi-lingual talent to further their export ambitions.

Ms Zhang led Macadamias Australia’s research and strategy for exporting bulk and retail nuts into China. This included leading the e-commerce strategy for selling through Alibaba (online) and Fresh Hema (online and retail stores). Within months of launching on Alibaba, the Australian agribusiness became the top e-commerce store in the imported macadamia category.

‘China has such a large population and (domestically) they can’t produce enough high-quality food for the demand,’ Ms Zhang said.

‘The middle-class is booming, with households increasing their disposable income.

‘Macadamias are regarded as a high-end nut in China. A lot of young professionals are turning to macadamias from almonds and walnuts.’

Macadamias Australia Director Trevor Steinhardt said China-based companies appreciated dealing with specialists with language skills.

‘Flora has enabled us to build a network and understands the culture much better than we do,’ he said.

‘Flora has also helped us enormously in our training and understanding of doing business in China.

‘In terms of the bulk side, Flora’s study enabled her to understand our business, create systems, streamline and value-add in regards to logistics, stock planning and scheduling, contracting, customer service and market intelligence.’

Originally hailing from China’s Guangxi province – a southern region with more than twice the population of Australia – Ms Zhang has made Bundaberg her new home.

China accounts for the largest group of international students studying in Queensland, with more than 30,000 currently enrolled in higher education, vocational education and training, English language courses or high schools, according to Deloitte Access Economics.

Study Queensland is a sponsor of the ACBC forum.

International education and training is identified as a key services export in the Queensland Trade and Investment Strategy 2017–2022.

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TIQ showcases Wide Bay opportunities for migrant investors

Investment and export opportunities in Queensland’s Wide Bay Burnett region were showcased to 40 business migrant investors and migration agents during a TIQ roadshow from 23 to 27 September.

Investment and export opportunities in the Wide Bay Burnett region were showcased to 40 business migrant investors and migration agents during a TIQ roadshow in late September.

The one-week tour took Business and Skilled Migration Queensland (BSMQ) investors and agents from China, Vietnam, Papua New Guinea and Pakistan to Bundaberg, Gayndah, Kingaroy, Rainbow Beach, Tin Can Bay, Maryborough and Hervey Bay.

TIQ partnered with the Bundaberg, North Burnett, South Burnett and Fraser Coast regional councils for the roadshow, which ran from 23 to 27 September.

Councillors from each region provided presentations and hosted official dinners with key business leaders to provide in-depth information regarding industry capabilities and key investment opportunities in their regions.

Delegate Elaine Lan Le from Landmark Consulting Group Pty Ltd, an Australian investment consultancy with successful Vietnamese business migration clients, said the group was impressed by the level of engagement from the councils and the Queensland Government.

‘The fact that the government, at a state and at a local level, is so welcoming and open with us, gives us great confidence to invest in the region,’ she said.

Deputy Mayor Darren Everard of Fraser Coast Regional Council said that the roadshow was a great opportunity to showcase regional projects and people.

‘This roadshow will help us change the perception that investment opportunities are only available in the greater Brisbane and Gold Coast area,’ he said.

‘We want to show interstate and overseas migration agents there are opportunities in regional Queensland.’

Wide Bay Burnett has exceptional investment opportunities in tourism, food and agribusiness, fisheries and aquaculture, and advanced manufacturing.

A highlight of the tour was a visit to Macadamia Farm Management in Bundaberg, which demonstrated the growth of the macadamia nut industry and investment opportunities in commercial macadamia farms.

A visit to SSS Strawberries in Bundaberg – a farm owned and run by a migrant Vietnamese family – provided insights into Australia’s berry industry, with SSS owners speaking about opportunities to export freeze-dried strawberries to international markets.

Delegates also visited several South Burnett wineries, with one winery looking to access migrants’ export networks, and another looking to partner in a joint venture to expand winery infrastructure.

Cavalier Engineering in Gympie showcased cutting-edge technology in steel livestock equipment, with delegates from Papua New Guinea and Vietnam expressing interest in exporting cattle equipment from the company.

Property-development projects were also showcased, including the Avenue – a $10 million high-end office development in Hervey Bay – and opportunities in the beachfront suburb of Urangan.

The tour ended on the Fraser Coast, where delegates visited Maryborough business areas, including a new health precinct and the aviation and avion precinct, which is Australia’s newest airside high-tech manufacturing facility.

TIQ’s Wide Bay-Burnett regional team coordinated the visit, carefully matching the business background and investment interests of each migrant investor to the industry capabilities in the region.

Attracting investment to Queensland is one of the key goals of the Queensland Trade and Investment Strategy 2017–2022.

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Five Founders carbon-neutral beef launched in Singapore

Australia’s first carbon-neutral beef brand has launched in Singapore, in another achievement for Queensland’s agricultural exporters.

Australia’s first carbon-neutral beef brand has launched in Singapore, in another achievement for Queensland’s agricultural exporters.

Five Founders beef is produced by the North Australian Pastoral Company (NAPCo), one of Australia’s largest and oldest cattle producers, which has stations in Far North Queensland and the Northern Territory.

To become a certified carbon-neutral beef producer, Five Founders arranged for Ernst & Young to assess and evaluate the carbon footprint of its entire production chain – from livestock farming to operations and transportation.

The carbon emissions Five Founders produces in bringing its beef products from paddock to plate could then be compensated for with initiatives that absorb the same amount of carbon – if not more.

The Five Founders brand was launched at the Singapore Hilton on 2 September, with TIQ ASEAN staff attending.

TIQ represented the Queensland Government, and also arranged for Meat & Livestock Australia and businesses in Singapore’s food, beverage and hospitality industries to attend to hear about this unique Queensland product.

TIQ ASEAN’s Business Development Manager Suzanne Ong said Five Founders Beef would be distributed in Singapore by Alternative Selection, a gourmet foods distributor specialising in organic, allergen-free and preservative-free foods.

She said it would join another quality Queensland product.

‘Alternative Selection is a great channel to distribute the Five Founders beef product to a very receptive market,’ Ms Ong said.

‘Alternative Selection also represents Borrowdale, which produces free-range, carbon-neutral pork from Toowoomba,’ Ms Ong said.

‘We’re now connecting them with other Queensland producers that specialise in products such as beef, seafood and processed foods.

‘And we’re also introducing Five Founders to our network of food and retail services businesses in Singapore.’

Five Founders became Australia’s first certified carbon-neutral beef brand in April.

It is named for the five men who founded NAPCo in 1877.

Expanding Queensland’s trade and investment presence in Singapore and the ASEAN region is one of the initiatives of the Queensland Trade and Investment Strategy 2017–2022.

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Whitsunday ag project fruitful for Japanese trainees

In an Australian first, an on-farm training project in the Whitsundays is allowing 9 Japanese trainees to experience the full cycle of growing, from planting seeds through to picking fruit.

In an Australian first, an on-farm training project in the Whitsundays is allowing 9 Japanese trainees to experience the full cycle of growing, from planting seeds through to picking fruit.

The trainees are participating in the Whitsunday Agri-Knowledge Sharing Project, a unique initiative supported by Bowen Gumlu Growers AssociationWhitsunday Regional CouncilTAFE Queensland, and TIQ’s Study Queensland team.

The project provides Japanese agriculture graduates with hands-on training in areas such as agronomy, seeding, planting and harvesting.

As well as giving the trainees practical skills, it aims to foster positive long-term relationships between Queensland and Japan, with flow-on benefits to trade and training partnerships.

Trainee Kenta Noda, a graduate from Tokyo University of Agriculture, began his first practical placement at Bowen’s BQ Seedlings in March this year.

BQ Seedlings owner Neville Travers-Jones said 26-year-old Kenta was an enthusiastic trainee who had learned a great deal during his placement.

‘Kenta has demonstrated an open and inquiring mind and a passion in the art of reading plants,’ he said.

‘He is now confident in the development of growing medium and water quality, and understands the factors critical to the even germination of seed through his work with our seeding team.

‘This training has complemented Kenta’s academic studies and will give him the tools to enter the agriculture industry in Japan.’

Kenta agreed his time at BQ Seedlings had been extremely valuable.

‘I was excited to come to Australia to learn more about agriculture and I have already learnt so much,’ he said.

‘In the three months I’ve worked for BQ Seedlings, I have learnt about different seedling varieties, temperature for germination and checking seedling conditions.’

Kenta is now continuing his training at Brak Pak farm, also in Bowen, which grows tomatoes, pumpkins and mangoes.

At Brak Pak, he is helping to plant and care for the seedlings he germinated during his last placement.

The Whitsunday Agri-Knowledge Sharing Project aims to bring together the next generation of Japanese agriculture with local Queensland farmers to help stimulate agricultural trade and understanding between Japan and Queensland, especially regional Queensland.

It is has the potential to attract hundreds more trainees in the future.

The project is co-funded by the International Education and Training Partnership Fund under the International Education and Training Strategy to Advance Queensland 2016–2026.

Agriculture and international education are both export priorities in the Queensland Trade and Investment Strategy 2017–2022.

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Queensland companies visit Andhra Pradesh

TIQ supported 4 Queensland enterprises to showcase their goods and services to the government of the South Indian state of Andhra Pradesh in September.

TIQ supported 4 Queensland enterprises to showcase their products to the government of the South Indian state of Andhra Pradesh in September.

Andhra Pradesh is India’s eighth-largest state, has the country’s highest gross state domestic growth (11%) and is one of 10 focus states in Australia’s India Economic Strategy.

TIQ invited the Queensland companies to join a delegation of 22 Australian officials and experts travelling to Andhra Pradesh with the Australian Consul General for South India, Ms Susan Grace.

Participating Queensland firms were:

The firms were accompanied on the visit by Queensland Trade and Investment Commissioner for India Gitesh Agarwal, who provided formal introductions to key Ministers, Secretaries and other decision-makers in Andhra Pradesh.

Mr Agarwal said it was a great opportunity for the companies and for Queensland.

‘India is Queensland’s third-largest merchandise export market,’ Mr Agarwal said.

‘The presentations by these Queensland enterprises were a great opportunity to amplify their outcomes into the India market.

‘It’s another example of Queensland and India working together for mutual gain.’

During his visit, Mr Agarwal also took the opportunity to speak with the state’s Chief Minister, the Honourable Mr Jagan Mohan Reddy, about Queensland’s world-renowned expertise in electric vehicles and river management.

Both are areas of particular interest in India and especially Andhra Pradesh, which faces many of the same environmental issues confronting Queensland.

Queensland company Tritium – the 2018 Queensland Exporter of the Year – was commissioned earlier this year to roll out its electric-vehicle chargers to the massive Indian market.

Mr Agarwal said he also promoted other Queensland offerings to Ministers and Secretaries during the visit, focusing on areas such as mining, equipment, technology and services; education and training; agri-processing, and health and urban infrastructure.

The visit to Andhra Pradesh is already starting to deliver outcomes. Since the meetings took place:

  • QUT is engaging to further their work on a series of lectures on information security for teachers at Andhra Pradesh University
  • Populous is developing a deeper engagement with the Andhra Pradesh Capital Region Development Authority looking at opportunities at Amravati, the state’s new capital city
  • Envirotec has already presented their extensive research on the Andhra Pradesh’s agricultural ecosystem and the potential applications of their dehydration systems in key agriculture areas.

In November 2018, the Queensland Government released the Queensland-India Trade and Investment Strategy 2018–2023, which aims to deliver a $1.5 billion trade boost to the state’s economy and make it easier for Queenslanders to do business in India.

The Queensland-India Trade and Investment Strategy is the first country-specific trade and investment strategy developed as part of the Queensland Trade and Investment Strategy 2017–2022.

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Queensland on show at Asia Fruit Logistica

More than a dozen Queensland producers showcased the state’s fruit and vegetable bounty at Asia Fruit Logistica in Hong Kong in early September.

More than a dozen Queensland producers showcased the state’s fruit and vegetable bounty at Asia Fruit Logistica in Hong Kong in early September.

Asia Fruit Logistica is an annual gathering that brings together every link of the international fresh fruit and vegetable supply chain to network and do business.

This year’s event attracted more than 13,500 trade visitors, who connected with 826 exhibitors from 46 countries.

Queensland producers were among the exhibitors, showcasing everything from fresh fruit and vegetables (including eco-bananas, mangoes, avocados, lettuce, pumpkin, potatoes and salad leaves) to juices and more.

Some of the Queensland contingent chose to showcase their produce at their own independent booths, while others joined the AusVeg and Hort Innovation stands in the Australia Pavilion.

The Queenslanders also received support from TIQ’s Hong Kong office, which introduced them to potential local business partners.

Queensland Trade and Investment Commissioner for Hong Kong Julia Herries said TIQ staff were delighted to support the Queensland companies by providing local knowledge and introductions.

‘We were very pleased to be able to attend the reception in the Australia Pavilion and take the opportunity to introduce the Queensland companies to some of our key local contacts,’ she said.

‘Our Senior Business Development Manager also accompanied a Queensland supplier to a business banquet organised by distributors Huizhan Market and Hui Zhan International, where she introduced the supplier to potential contacts from Shanghai, Guangzhou and Beijing to explore export business to China.

‘Events like Asia Fruit Logistica are a great opportunity for Queensland companies to make face-to-face contacts and start building relationships in export markets.’

Asia Fruit Logistica ran from 4 to 6 September at Hong Kong’s AsiaWorld-Expo Center.

If you would like to explore agricultural export opportunities in Hong Kong, contact TIQ’s Hong Kong office or Brisbane-based Food and Agriculture team.

Agricultural exports to Asia are identified as one of Queensland’s growing strengths in the Queensland Trade and Investment Strategy 2017–2022.

Queensland companies attending Asia Fruit Logistica included: