Mayor gearing up to dazzle international investors
WEARING a Southern Great Barrier Reef t-shirt and spruiking Gladstone's port, workforce and power generation, Matt Burnett is the region's walking billboard at an international conference.
Gladstone's mayor, who is in Boston with the Queensland premier and five other regional Queensland mayors for the 2018 Bio Convention, has spent the past two days speaking with major international investors about the benefits of doing business in the region.
He said yesterday's highlight was Ms Palaszczuk announcing the State Government's commitment of a further $42 million into the Advance Queensland fund.
Cr Burnett is confident Gladstone will receive some of the funding, with the last round awarding $1 million to Northern Oil Refinery at Yarwun to upgrade its facility to produce biohydrogen.
Today Cr Burnett will be the only Queensland mayor to present at the Open Worldwide Innovation Network to a crowd of global bio-industry leaders, in a bid to bring a new project to Gladstone.
Well that was unexpected! On behalf of everyone who’s ever been involved in Qld’s many bio industries, the researchers, investors, businesses and government, I am deeply honoured to receive the inaugural Leadership Award from the Biotechnology Innovation Organisation. pic.twitter.com/m5ooQJ16qd— AnnastaciaPalaszczuk (@AnnastaciaMP) June 3, 2018
Cr Burnett's presentation will include information about the state development area, the capabilities of Gladstone businesses and the industries already set up in the Port City.
"The good news for us is I'm having people come up to me who want to talk about Gladstone," he said.
"And for those who don't know where Gladstone is on the map, all you have to do is mention the multinationals who have invested in the region, like Shell, ConocoPhillips and Rio Tinto and that really makes them listen up."
The trip, costed at $9180, is Cr Burnett's second consecutive year at the international convention.
Last year he was the only Queensland mayor to attend, but this year he is joined by Bundaberg, Rockhampton, Mackay, Townsville and Sunshine Coast mayors.
The convention itself attracts about 16,000 attendees from more than 5000 companies around the world.
Organisations represented at the convention include the world's leading biotech companies, top 25 pharma companies and more than 300 academic institutions.