The WA Industry Link Regional Communication Forums have wrapped up for 2019 and the events have proven to be a hit with suppliers and businesses in regional WA.
The Communication Forums were established in 2018 to improve the dialogue between the regional business community and the State Government on opportunities in government procurement.
The 2019 forums kicked off in late July in the Kimberley with events in Broome and Kununurra, before winding around the state to Karratha, Port Hedland, Kalgoorlie, Bunbury, Mandurah and eventually Albany in early November.
More than 500 people registered for the eight events across the state, which provided businesses with a better understanding of how to access the opportunities that exist in their region.
Keynote speakers from agencies and government highlighted the significance the State Government places on improving access to government contracts and the benefits this will have for the regions.
The forums also provided an important source of information on the availability of State Government programs to assist regional business in supplying to both public and private markets.
Attendees were also introduced to their region’s Local Content Adviser and offered information on the advisory services available.
A Department of Jobs, Tourism, Science and Innovation survey completed by attendees after the forums, found more than 90 per cent of the people would attend an event like this in the future.
Suppliers surveyed also felt the forums were a unique opportunity for businesses to come together in the same room as policy makers and State Government representatives.
One of the most important aspects of the forums were the chance for stakeholders and businesses to provide input to government about what they believe is working and not working when it comes to accessing opportunities in the regions.
One of the topics raised at the forums were suppliers and businesses wanted a better understanding of the tendering process.
The WA Industry Link Communication Forums will be back in 2020, with the events heading to the Wheatbelt, Mid West and Gascoyne regions.
The forums are expected to be annual event because the government is committed to consult and more importantly collaborate with regional stakeholders.