October 2021 Update from the CEO

I read a great meme this week… “Its like winter is really mad and keeps storming out of the room and then coming back in yelling… “And another thing!” Hopefully November will bring more of the warmer days and dryer weather that we would expect from Kambarang.  

October has been a busy month for BGCCI. While I was able to take a few days off here and there to recharge my batteries, we also delivered a large range of events for our members. The month kicked off with the Local Jobs Marketplace for the Horticulture, Agriculture and Food Processing industry on the 6 October. It was great to see the range of jobs on offer and the different ways businesses are trying to adapt to attract and accommodate workers.

BGCCI collaborated with the Department of Training and Workforce Development and South Regional TAFE to host a South West regional Year 9 Careers Taster forum. With a diverse representation from industry and education providers from across the region, the session explored what the program could look like. While there will certainly be more to come on this, it was great to hear a united voice supporting the view that there are some great initiatives being delivered in the region already. What seems to be missing is the coordination of effort and the opportunity of more consistency across our education providers. Limited resources appear to be at the heart of this struggle.

Last week we hosted TPG and nbn to talk about Enterprise Ethernet and the need to build the digital capability within this region if businesses located here hope to compete on a global platform.

This week, Bunbury Flying School hosted our October Business After Hours event, at Bunbury Airport. What an amazing crew, from the owner Blair and management Pamela Ray, they have created a high-class training facility for commercial pilots as well as those looking to have an aeronautical experience or train for their recreational licence. The Trainers and Pilots gave us a tour and a number of our members even got to practice landing a plane in their onsite simulator.

Tonight, BGCCI are co-hosting a sundowner event in partnership with Hon. Don Punch MLA Member for Bunbury to celebrate WA Small Business Day. The aim of Small Business Day is to celebrate and recognise the contribution that small businesses make to WA. It is a ‘Think Small First’ event to raise awareness about small business in Western Australia and the contribution they make to our economy and community.

CCIWA recently shared some data indicating the that top 3 barriers to businesses in the SW are:

  • The availability of skilled labour,
  • The potential of an uncontrolled outbreak of COVID 19, and
  • Rising operating costs.

In early November, myself and President Danny Griffin will be attending the Regional Chambers of Commerce and Industry (RCCIWA) half yearly regional conference, from the 11 – 12 November. Day one focuses on advocating on behalf of our members through a parliamentary forum with a range of current ministers. Our host for the audience with parliamentary ministers will the Hon. Reece Whitby – Minister for Emergency Services, Racing and Gaming, Small Business and Volunteering. The end of Day One finishes with a Business After Hours networking event, where we will have an opportunity to discuss issues and network more casually with a number of ministers including the Leader of the Opposition the Hon. Mia Davies and Hon. Allannah Mac Tiernan – Minister for Regional Development. Day Two focusses on operational leadership and learning collectively how to build and grow our Chambers and represent the needs of our members.  The conference generally attracts 20-25 CCI delegates from across Western Australia, representing each of the 9 regions across regional WA. The full network of 44 Chambers represents more than 7,500 businesses across regional WA.

During this conference we are preparing to discuss:

  • Jobs and skills shortages in our region,
  • Availability of housing and accommodation,
  • COVID-19 Mandatory Vaccination Policy,
  • Sustainability – Net Zero 2050 target,
  • Hardwood logging – Timber Debate, and
  • Electoral Reform – which we anticipate to be a major focus of the conference.

To ensure that we are informed by your opinion and perspective on these matters, please complete the survey which will be sent out next week. As a member of the BGCCI its important to us that the issues impacting your business are heard.

Gold Partners