By Staff Writer Mozza
Moreton Bay Region Industry and Tourism (MBRIT) recently held a gathering of business and political leaders to celebrate their 2021 business and tourism initiatives, including the future of the Tastes of Moreton food and wine festival which was to be held in Redcliffe in July and August but was cancelled due to COVID lockdowns.
The gathering at the Eatons Hill Hotel unveiled MBRITs ‘Bigger, Bolder, Brighter’ plan and economic strategy for the region, which features the food and wine festival among several signature events. Other events and initiatives include the Regional Business Excellence Awards, the council’s Innovation Hub and REDS program.
The Regional Economic Development Strategy 2020-2041 (REDS) provides the blueprint for council, industry and the business community to collaboratively build a $40 billion economy by attracting and generating 100,000 new jobs for our region by 2041.
The REDS provides long-term economic direction for the region and drives innovation and entrepreneurship to position the Moreton Bay region as one of Australia’s top 10 regional innovation hubs by 2041.
At the Northlakes Ko-work Innovation Hub and the Samford Sustainable Start Up Hub they grow and nurture the skills and knowledge of innovators and startup organisations and create connections, provide learning opportunities, inspire fresh ideas and build economic and personal resilience.
The Hubs are anchored in Queensland’s Moreton Bay Region, with a reach into collaborating regions and countries wanting to respond to the sustainability challenge.
Hosted by local celebrity Ian Skippen, the gathering included the Shadow State Cabinet led by David Crisafulli and his deputy David Janetzki, as well as Jarrod Bleijie, Deb Frecklington, Ros Bates, John Paul Langbrook, Tim Nichols and a host of other state and federal politicians. Longman MP Terry Young was present for the federal government, and Mayor Peter Flannery represented council.
During the presentation it was revealed that 200 000 more people would be living in Moreton Bay in the next 20 years. A panel discussion covered the challenges this growth presents, with the opposition leader expressing his concern that the increase in population was outstripping infrastructure like roads and social facilities as well as employment opportunities. He went on to outline how his government would address these current problems if they are able to form government in 3 years’ time.
Business leaders from the region were able to highlight their issues and ask about assistance from government at all levels. These questions also reminded our representatives how important these business initiatives were and of the need to do more to sustain and encourage industry.
The night was capped off with some informal networking between business owners and government representatives and was well received by business owners looking for support and understanding while they try to recover their businesses from COVID lockdowns.