March 2019

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Toowoomba and Cairns in running for ag export centre

Toowoomba and Cairns have made it to the final round of a selection process that will see a multimillion-dollar agricultural export centre established in one of these regional communities.

Toowoomba and Cairns have made it to the final round of a selection process that will see a multimillion-dollar agricultural export centre established in one of these regional communities.

The Regional Export Distribution Centre is a Queensland Government initiative designed to boost access to overseas markets for agricultural producers, stimulate high-value farming and processing, and create jobs in regional Queensland.

Toowoomba’s Wagner Group Holdings and Cairns business Air Freight Handling Services have been selected to submit business cases to locate the centre at their local airports.

They were chosen from more than 30 regional businesses and communities that submitted proposals to host the pilot centre as part of a selection process that began in May last year.

Minister for Agriculture Mark Furner said agricultural exports were major contributors to the Queensland economy.

‘The export of Queensland’s premium agriculture products contributed almost $12 billion to our economy last financial year,’ Mr Furner said.

‘Initiatives like the Regional Export Distribution Centre Pilot will ensure we can build on our reputation as a global leader in the production and processing of top-quality agricultural produce, driving additional jobs and growth for our regions.

‘This will mean more money for primary producers, and more jobs for Queensland.’

Wagner Group Holdings will submit a business case to locate the Regional Export Distribution Centre at Toowoomba’s Wellcamp Airport, while Air Freight Handling Services will submit a case to locate the centre at Cairns Airport.

A final decision on the outcome of the process and the location of the centre is expected to be made later this year.

The Queensland Government has committed up to $10 million from the Jobs and Regional Growth Fund to help fund the pilot export distribution centre.

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

If you have an agricultural product you think could succeed in an overseas market, contact one of TIQ’s regional advisors.

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Indonesia-Australia economic agreement signed

The benefits of a free trade agreement between Australia and Indonesia are one step closer with the signing of the new Indonesia-Australia Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement (IA-CEPA) on 4 March in Jakarta.

The benefits of a free trade agreement between Australia and Indonesia are one step closer with the signing of the new Indonesia-Australia Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement (IA-CEPA) on 4 March in Jakarta.

Queensland primary producers, resources companies, education providers and other businesses are likely to enjoy improved export opportunities as a result of the agreement, which was signed by Australian Trade Minister Simon Birmingham and his Indonesian counterpart Enggartiasto Lukita.

The IA-CEPA is a free trade agreement designed to foster economic cooperation between Australia and Indonesia and expand and diversify bilateral economic partnerships.

Queensland Trade and Investment Commissioner for Indonesia Ben Giles said the new agreement would have a number of benefits for Queensland producers.

‘The IA-CEPA will allow more than 99% of Australian goods exports to enter Indonesia either duty-free or under improved preferential arrangements by 2020, with the most noticeable trade benefits being in agriculture.’ Mr Giles said.

‘The new agreement will also provide greater certainty for services suppliers such as education and healthcare providers who want to enter and operate in the Indonesian market.

‘Queensland holds a significant share of Australia’s export market for Indonesia, and Queensland businesses are already active in providing professional services here, so I believe we are one of the state economies with most to gain.’

Queensland exported $1.2 billion worth of goods to Indonesia in 2017–18, a 17.3% increase on the previous year. Indonesian tourism, study and investment in Queensland are also increasing.

Both Indonesia and Australia must now complete their own domestic treaty-making processes before IA-CEPA can be implemented.

For Australia, this will include an inquiry by the Joint Standing Committee on Treaties (JSCOT).

TIQ relocated and expanded its Jakarta office in 2018, supported by funding committed under the Queensland Trade and Investment Strategy 2017–2022.

If you’d like advice on exporting into Indonesia, or other overseas markets, contact TIQ today.

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Queensland business on show at IDEX Abu Dhabi

Queensland companies were among the Australian contingent exhibiting at the IDEX Defence Trade Exhibition in Abu Dhabi in February.

Queensland companies were among the Australian contingent exhibiting at the IDEX Defence Trade Exhibition in Abu Dhabi in February.

IDEX is one of the Middle East’s largest defence events, and attracted exhibitors from around the world.

Seven Queensland companies showcased their products there, most under the banner of the Australian booth:

  • EM Solutions
  • Gaardtech
  • Hawker Pacific
  • Heat Treatment Australia
  • Holmwood Highgate
  • Tough Gear Trading (independent exhibitor)
  • Skyborne Technologies (under the banner of UAE partners Algorythma).

Queensland Trade and Investment Commissioner for the Middle East Donna Massie said local TIQ staff had spent time with Queensland exhibitors at IDEX and joined them for meetings with potential business partners.

‘It’s important to showcase products to the global market through trade shows like IDEX, but one-on-one meetings are also critical,’ Ms Massie said.

‘Those meetings can turn into major investments or deals that take a Queensland business to the next level.

‘In the case of Skyborne Technologies, which is a small Queensland start-up specialising in drones, we’ve recently seen major backing from a UAE investor that will enable Skyborne to take the next steps to commercialisation.

‘We’ll be working with other exhibitors on leads from IDEX, and I’m hopeful that we’ll see more sales and investment in coming months.’

Ms Massie said that Queensland exhibitors had reported making contact with many potential buyers, distributors and partners at IDEX.

IDEX is held every 2 years and ran 17–21 February 2019 at the Abu Dhabi National Exhibition Centre in the United Arab Emirates.

The aerospace and defence sector is identified as one of Queensland’s growing export priorities in the Queensland Trade and Investment Strategy 2017–2022, with a recent Ipswich summit exploring future opportunities in the state’s growing defence sector.

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On your marks for SportAccord 2019

The world’s biggest names in sports business will head to the Gold Coast this May for SportAccord 2019, with major benefits for both international delegates and Queensland businesses.

The world’s biggest names in sports business will head to the Gold Coast this May for SportAccord 2019, with major benefits for both international delegates and Queensland businesses.

That was the message at a SportAccord business briefing held at Australia House in London last month, hosted by TIQ Europe and the City of Gold Coast.

SportAccord is the world’s leading sports-business summit, bringing together sports decision-makers to network, discuss industry issues and seek commercial opportunities.

SportAccord 2019 will build on the international interest generated by last year’s Gold Coast Commonwealth Games and its accompanying Trade 2018 program, which included sessions on the economic impact of major sporting events.

TIQ Commissioner for Europe Linda Apelt said that representatives at the London briefing heard about the benefits of attending SportAccord, including the opportunity to connect with world-class Queensland businesses.

‘For the first time ever, SportAccord 2019 will include an extension program where international delegates and local Queensland businesses can participate in events including workshops, networking and site visits,’ Ms Apelt said.

‘This will be a unique opportunity for sports decision-makers, including delegates from influential international sports federations, to meet Queensland suppliers who can provide world-class products for sporting events.

‘Many of these Queensland businesses had the opportunity to scale up their operations as suppliers for the Gold Coast Commonwealth Games.

‘They offer services in everything from venue construction and management to high-tech systems that manage transport flows during major sporting events.’

Sport Accord will run from 5 to 10 May this year at the Gold Coast Convention and Exhibition Centre.

Around 60 potential delegates attended the London briefing session, which was held on 20 February.

The briefing was held in collaboration with the UK Department of International Trade, which will lead a trade mission to SportAccord, and Major Events International, which will support and promote the mission.

Boosting exports, including services exports, is a key goal of the Queensland Trade and Investment Strategy 2017–2022.

If you’re an overseas delegate interested in attending SportAccord, or a Queensland business interested in promoting your product there, contact TIQ

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Regional SMEs learn funding secrets

Business owners from around the state turned out to hear from a range of experts at the workshops, which were presented by TIQ in conjunction with the Department of State Development, Manufacturing, Infrastructure and Planning.

Queensland enterprises hoping to attract new funding and investment need to think like a potential investor and prepare a solid business case.

That was the key message at recent Attract funding training workshops run across regional Queensland.

Business owners from around the state turned out to hear from a range of experts at the workshops, which were presented by TIQ in conjunction with the Department of State Development, Manufacturing, Infrastructure and Planning.

In Maroochydore, 31 people attended, hearing presentations on funding options ranging from small-business loans to international investment opportunities and government grants and programs.

In Maryborough, 16 local businesses learned key insights, including BTB Marine owner Chris Hough, who said the workshop had given him a deeper understanding of what investors were looking for.

‘I have a better understanding of what’s involved in securing investment now, and the kind of records and preparation you need to have before approaching a prospective investor,’ he said.

‘The presenters emphasised the importance of thoroughly documenting your finances, your management structure, and your sales and export history, and being able to clearly tell an investor their probable ROI.

‘There are quite a few steps, and it was good to hear how TIQ can help with the process of preparing a business case.’

TIQ regional offices across Queensland can support local businesses in a range of ways, including connecting them with potential overseas investors and helping them prepare for investor meetings.

The recent workshops were part of the ‘Business growth essentials’ series, which is being funded under the Queensland Trade and Investment Strategy 2017–2022.

More ‘Attract funding’ workshops will be held in Brisbane on 18 March and Bundaberg on 28 March. Register now if you would like to attend. You can also check out all our workshops, which include sessions on ecommerce, pitching and cultural awareness.

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Tritium signs deal to supply EV chargers to Indian market

Brisbane-based company Tritium has signed a deal to provide electric-vehicle chargers to the massive Indian market.

Brisbane-based company Tritium has signed a deal to provide electric-vehicle chargers to the massive Indian market.

Tritium, Queensland’s Exporter of the Year for 2018, has signed a memorandum of understanding with India’s Tata AutoComp Systems to supply its Veefil-RT 50KW DC fast chargers for distribution across India.

The deal comes not long after the Indian Government announced it would extend its support for electric vehicles through the second phase of its FAME – Faster Adoption and Manufacture of (Hybrid and) Electric Vehicles – scheme.

Announcing the deal, Tritium CEO David Finn said that the FAME scheme was one of the world’s most progressive EV policy initiatives.

‘The MoU ensures Tata AutoComp remains at the forefront of innovation in India, as the nation adopts the FAME India Scheme,’ he said.

‘The FAME policy is among the most progressive initiatives in the world, and Tata AutoComp’s commitment to rolling out DC fast chargers for vehicles of all sizes is helping to put India ahead of the world in its drive towards a cleaner future.’

Tata AutoComp Systems Managing Director and CEO Aravind Goel said the deal with Tritium was about bringing the latest technology and solutions to Indian customers.

‘With the augment of electric vehicles, the need for chargers capable of powering them is significant and we see a huge opportunity in this market.

‘We are pleased to have Tritium as our partner, which has been offering cutting-edge technology in DC chargers to the global automotive industry.’

Brisbane-headquartered Tritium has offices in Australia, Amsterdam and Los Angeles, and has exported its chargers to 26 countries.

The company won both Queensland Exporter of the Year and the Manufacturing Award at the Premier of Queensland’s Export Awards 2018

TIQ has worked closely with Tritium on its expansion into overseas markets.

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

Read more about Tritium and other exciting Queensland start-ups on TIQ’s Medium page.

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Sunshine Coast in world’s top 7 ‘intelligent communities’

The Sunshine Coast has been ranked the world’s fifth-most ‘intelligent community’ by the not-for-profit research group, the Intelligent Community Forum.

The Sunshine Coast has been ranked in the world’s top 7 ‘intelligent communities’ by the not-for-profit research group, the Intelligent Community Forum (ICF).

The ICF’s Top 7 Intelligent Communities of 2019 celebrates the cities that are doing the best job of using technology to increase efficiencies, expand opportunities and build sustainable prosperity.

The full list comprised:

  • Abbotsford, British Columbia, Canada
  • Chicago, Illinois, USA
  • Hudson, Ohio, USA
  • Sarnia-Lambton County, Ontario, Canada
  • Sunshine Coast, Queensland, Australia
  • Taoyuan, Taiwan
  • Westerville, Ohio, USA.

ICF co-founder Louis Zacharilla said 6 of the cities were appearing on the list for the first time, and that even smaller centres far from the world’s technology hubs could now be digital achievers.

‘They may not be as familiar to the world as some of our previous recipients, but in this century, it is becoming obvious that any place can become great once the playing field is levelled,’ Mr Zacharilla said.

‘Thanks to digital technology, the size and location of a community matter far less than ever before.

‘People can stay home and thrive.’

Sunshine Coast Mayor Mark Jamieson said making the list was a significant achievement for the local community, and recognised council’s investment in game-changing projects such as the International Broadband Submarine Cable and many other initiatives.

The international broadband project will see an undersea fibre-optic cable extended to the Sunshine Coast, giving the region Australia’s fastest telecommunications connection to Asia from 2020.

The cable will help drive diversification of the Sunshine Coast economy, improve connections between local businesses and Asian markets, and attract new business and investment, particularly from organisations with big-data requirements.

Construction has started and the project is due for completion in 2020.

Enhancing digital capabilities is one of the priorities of the Queensland Trade and Investment Strategy 2017–2022, and the Queensland Government is supporting the undersea cable project with $15 million from the Jobs and Regional Growth Fund.

The Top 7 Intelligent Communities 2019 list was announced in Canada on 11 February. One of the 7 cities in the list will be named the Intelligent Community of the Year at the ICF Summit in June in New York City.

For advice on Sunshine Coast trade and investment opportunities, contact TIQ’s Sunshine Coast office.

 

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International ed grants closing this Friday

International education and training (IET) providers who’d like to help students increase their employment options have until 15 March to apply for grants from Study Queensland’s IET Partnership Fund.

International education and training (IET) providers who’d like to help students increase their employment options have until 15 March to apply for grants from Study Queensland’s IET Partnership Fund.

The partnership fund is an opportunity for Queensland-based education consortia to secure between $5,000 and $150,000 for projects that support Queensland’s IET Strategy.

Projects for this round of funding must be designed to enhance employability for international students.

Employability continues to be a key focus for Study Queensland and a key driver when international students are choosing where to study.

Each consortium must comprise at least 2 education providers, and provide financial support for their project that is equal to the grant received from the fund.

Projects receiving funding in the previous round of the IET Partnership Fund varied greatly in size, focus and location.

If you’re interested in applying in this round, make sure to first read the IET Partnership Fund Guidelines, which provide more details about eligibility and other requirements.

You can also watch the fund video for more ideas and information.

Expressions of interest for the fund close Friday 15 March.

Contact Study Queensland if you need any further information.

The IET Partnership Fund is an initiative under the International Education and Training Strategy to Advance Queensland 2016–2026.

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QODE tech fest coming in April

Want to join other bright minds from around the world at Brisbane’s newest innovation celebration, or showcase your tech to potential investors from around the world? Then you’ll be pleased to know that earlybird tickets and exhibitor applications are now open for the QODE innovation and technology event, coming to Brisbane for the first time this April.

Want to join other bright minds from around the world at Brisbane’s newest innovation celebration, or showcase your tech to potential investors?

Then now’s the time to secure your spot at the QODE innovation and technology event, coming to Brisbane for the first time this April.

Targeting entrepreneurial start-up and investment communities, QODE will feature:

  • seminars and workshops
  • the QODEX tech expo
  • presentations by some of the world’s brightest minds in technology and innovation.

Highlights will include:

Running 2–3 April at the Brisbane Convention & Exhibition Centre, QODE is expected to attract more than 3,000 visitors from around the world, including tech-industry leaders, government representatives and motivated investors.

It will feature 15 international speakers discussing the future business landscape, and offer space for around 100 start-up and established tech companies to showcase their products.

Described as stimulating, energising, disruptive and provocative, the QODE program will kick off with a launch party on 1 April.

Applications for exhibitor booths are now open, and advance-purchase tickets at reduced rates are on sale.

QODE is part of Brisbane’s larger Curiocity event, which also includes the World Science Festival in March.

Supporting start-ups and encouraging digital innovation are both priorities of the Queensland Trade and Investment Strategy 2017–2022.

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Business Growth grants – apply now

Queensland SMEs looking to expand and employ more staff are being invited to apply for grants of up to $50,000 to help grow their businesses.

Queensland SMEs looking to expand their business and employ more staff can apply for grants of up to $50,000 from the Queensland Government’s Business Growth Fund.

The fund helps small to medium-sized businesses buy and implement specialised equipment or services to help them seize growth opportunities.

Businesses need to demonstrate how a grant would help them move to the next stage of growth, and successful applicants must contribute 25%–50% of the total project cost.

Minister for Employment and Small Business Shannon Fentiman said that the grants could be used for services such as advice and mentoring as well as equipment.

‘The Business Growth Fund will provide targeted assistance so that businesses can purchase specialised equipment or access professional advice to help their business grow,’ she said.

‘We want more businesses to expand sustainably with expert advice and support, to provide Queenslanders with strong stable jobs.

‘This is a huge opportunity for Queensland businesses looking to take their business to the next level of growth, with more than $2 million in funding available.’

The Business Growth Fund is open to Queensland businesses with fewer than 50 employees and a minimum turnover of $500,000.

Applicants will go through a 2-stage assessment process, including a Shark Tank–style pitch during which they’ll have to put their plans to a panel of business experts.

Growth opportunities can include expanding into overseas markets through ecommerce or other export activities.

Applications have been open since mid-2018 and the assessment panel is expected to meet in the near future.

For more information, see the Business Growth Fund Guidelines and application form.

The Queensland Trade and Investment Strategy 2017–2022 includes a number of initiatives to support the state’s small to medium-sized enterprises.

If you’re a Queensland business interested in exporting your products, connect with TIQ to find out about the full range of services available to SMEs.