TIQ is partnering with one of Latin America’s most prominent mining industry bodies to host a special business-matching program for Queensland mining equipment, technology and services (METS) companies this month.

Connect with Antofagasta will introduce Queensland METS companies directly to potential mining clients and key representatives from Antofagasta in northern Chile, with the help of the Antofagasta Industry Association (AIA).

TIQ Principal Trade and Investment Officer in Mackay Howard Hayes said the region around Antofagasta offered diverse opportunities for Queensland’s METS companies.

‘Antofagasta is a major service centre for the mining industry in Chile – just like Mackay in Queensland – that’s surrounded by a number of the largest mines in the world,’ Mr Hayes said.

‘Connect with Antofagasta will be a chance for Queensland METS companies to talk directly with potential customers and start building relationships with them through extended one-on-one meetings.

‘AIA plays a key role in procuring services for its member mining companies and it will also help Queensland companies learn about procurement avenues in Chile during this event.

‘We’re trying to replicate a full trade show experience despite the COVID-19 pandemic, meaning this will probably be the best opportunity this year for METS companies to explore a new international market in depth.’

Mr Hays emphasised that TIQ was well placed to help companies expand into markets in Latin America.

‘We want a wide variety of METS clients to assess this market because it’s one that’s really chasing Queensland and Australian mining expertise,’ he said.

‘TIQ can provide both the opportunities to make connections and in-market support on the ground  through our representatives in Queensland and Santiago, who are experienced in the METS and mining industry.’

Mr Hays said Chile’s mature mining operating environment was similar to Australia’s.

‘Chilean companies’ understanding of productivity principles and safety standards is equivalent to what we have in Australia,’ Mr Hayes said.

‘Queensland companies are used to being part of structured and efficient supply chains and the Antofagasta region is like that.

‘There’s not many changes Queensland companies need to make to become part of those supply chains and feed their products into a very big mining market.

‘Operators in Antofagasta understand the impact that our technology will have on their industry and have the money to afford to buy it.’

Queensland METS companies interested in participating in Connect with Antofagasta should contact Howard Hayes.

The METS sector is identified as an emerging export strength in the Queensland Trade and Investment Strategy 2017–2022.