Ex­pert’s visit is good tim­ing

The Cairns Post - - VIEWS -

A VISIT to Cairns by re­spected Com­mon­wealth Bank chief econ­o­mist Craig James could not have come at a bet­ter time.

In Businessweek to­day he is urg­ing busi­ness and com­mu­nity lead­ers to use the State Elec­tion to lobby hard for ma­jor in­vest­ment, es­pe­cially for ex­ports through Cairns Air­port.

It’s a golden op­por­tu­nity to elicit prom­ises for funds to se­cure new routes and ex­port con­tracts.

Both ma­jor par­ties have made com­mit­ments to the At­tract­ing Avi­a­tion In­vest­ment Fund but there also is a pro­posal for an ir­ra­di­a­tion plant to treat lo­cally pro­duced trop­i­cal fruits for ex­port. Also grants are needed to ex­plore ex­port deals.

Food ex­ports and tourism grow hand-in-hand. Pas­sen­gers up­stairs in the plane and qual­ity ex­port pro­duce un­der­neath, es­pe­cially seafood and fruit.

Cashed up Asian con­sumers want top qual­ity fruit, veg­eta­bles and meat, not just run of the mill bananas and sugar.

Mr James sug­gests cre­at­ing a classy Far North­ern ex­port brand.

Our prox­im­ity to Asia, with air­lines such as Cathay-Pa­cific, SilkAir and Hong Kong Air­lines, pro­vide reg­u­lar flights and soon China South­ern and Hainan car­ri­ers from main­land China.

Cathay-Pa­cific runs a very suc­cess­ful ex­port freight busi­ness us­ing their flights to and from Hong Kong.

Sin­ga­pore is an­other mar­ket that must be se­ri­ously con­sid­ered with de­mand for first class Aus­tralian prod­ucts.

They are will­ing to pay for qual­ity and can trust where the food comes from. Nick Dal­ton Deputy edi­tor

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