From tourism and labour markets in the Far North, to supply chains and exports in the South West and the economic and financial impacts of COVID and natural disasters across the state, Chamber of Commerce and Industry Queensland (CCIQ) is hitting the road to gather direct insight into the most significant business issues in Queensland.
The Regional Policy Committees aim to provide local chambers and business stakeholders a stronger voice in discussions about the future of the economy and local communities.
CCIQ Policy and Advocacy General Manager Amanda Rohan said CCIQ worked on policy and advocacy issues in collaboration with chambers across Queensland, including through the CCIQ Policy Advisory Board and Regional Policy Committees, made up of local and regional chambers.
Starting in Gold Coast, Brisbane, Redlands and Logan this week, 114 chambers will meet at 11 committees in the South East, Darling Downs and South West, Scenic Rim, Sunshine Coast, Far North and North, Mackay, Issac and Whitsundays, Central Queensland and Wide Bay.
“We advocate on the issues that are important to Queensland businesses to government agencies, business institutions, industry associations and the corporate sector with the aim to understand the issues critical to the success of Queensland businesses and regional prosperity,” Ms Rohan said.
“The Regional Policy Committees across Queensland provide the opportunity to foster communication and collaboration with local Chambers of Commerce and give them and their members the chance to contribute to state and federal policy and advocacy with their needs at the forefront.
Ms Rohan said there was an emphasis for committee members to represent the diverse business community in Queensland to bring all kinds of backgrounds, insights and ideas.
“Queensland is a diverse state economically, geographically and socially so we’re expecting a range of topics on the table,” Ms Rohan said.
“Already we’re hearing a focus on Olympics opportunities for businesses, jobs, business connectivity and infrastructure among the leading opportunities for business.
“There’s no better way to understand local issues than to get into the regions and hear straight from chambers on the ground.”
The Regional Policy Committees will share knowledge, provide direction, and inform policy related to business needs at the local, state, and national levels as well as contribute to policy submissions and work together to identify and address issues impacting businesses both at the local and state government levels.
Straddie Chamber of Commerce President Colin Battersby said the chamber represented businesses from hospitality and tourism to construction, health care and professional services which he represented at the committee in Redland Bay this week.
Mr Battersby said two thirds of the island’s population was directly or indirectly supported through a chamber member.
“The ability for little chambers like us to have a formal voice direct to CCIQ who can advocate on our behalf is a great opportunity,” he said.
“An opportunity to have that direct pipeline into government through CCIQ, to put us on the map and to have our voice heard was too good to miss.
“It was also a chance to formally meet with some of our neighbouring chambers.”
Mr Battersby said connectivity, infrastructure and jobs were the three big issues on the agenda.
“We need to work on connectivity, both online and transport to the island to get tourists here,” he said.
“We also spoke about providing long-lasting legacy infrastructure like ferry terminals, and tourism assets to support locals and facilitate business.
“We’re also all about jobs, jobs, jobs and getting people into roles.”
For more information on the Regional Policy Committees see the CCIQ website or follow #CCIQRegionalPolicyCommittee on socials.