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Political heavyweights out in force for New Pilbara Conference

Nov 17, 2016

A WHO’s who of Western Australian business, politics and industry will take the stage at The New Pilbara Economic Development Conference in Perth on Tuesday, 29 November, proving the economic powerhouse region is still a driving force in the state’s economy.

Hosted by the Pilbara Regional Chambers of Commerce, the one-day economic development conference has attracted interest from some of the state’s biggest names and brightest minds.

The impressive speaker line-up includes WA Premier Hon. Colin Barnett; Leader of the WA National Party, Minister for Housing and Member for the Pilbara, Hon Brendon Grylls; Minister for Regional Development Hon Terry Redman and Leader of the Australian Labor Party WA Mark McGowan.

Endorsed today by Hon. Colin Barnett, Premier; Minister for Tourism; Science, the event will assist those looking to learn more about opportunities to invest in the transformation of the region.

Mr Barnett said, “I recently visited Karratha and acknowledge the significant potential of the Burrup Peninsula, which is home to the world largest collection of ancient rock art. Strategic investment in tourism infrastructure and assets would activate the National Park creating new jobs and economic growth. This is just one example of the new opportunities emerging in the Pilbara.

This conference demonstrates the collective commitment of Pilbara businesses to place the region in the best possible position to seize opportunities for growth and diversification”.

Pilbara Regional Chambers of Commerce spokesperson Mr John Lally, said he was delighted to have endorsement from the Premier as well as other key political players.

Mr Lally said he was looking forward to hearing an exclusive presentation from the Minister for Regional Development, Terry Redman, as well as important project updates from Port Hedland International Airport and Tourism WA.

“Our goal is to showcase the emerging opportunities in the Pilbara. It’s not doom and gloom - there are exciting opportunities in agribusiness, renewable energy, tourism and more. We will ensure key parties are well-informed and prepared, so they can make the most of these opportunities”, he said.

“In order to be well-informed they need the latest news and information with key insights from all stakeholder groups – business, industry and politics.”

A selection of high-profile business leaders including Nathan Harding from Tourism WA will discuss how they plan to make the most of the Pilbara’s transformation.

Mr Lally said, “This event is set to be a vital communication platform for some of Western Australia’s leading decision makers to present their visions, challenges and success stories to professionals who have an important role in the advancement of the Pilbara region.”

Pilbara Development Commission Chief Executive Officer Terry Hill said the conference was a timely opportunity to showcase the region’s economic potential.

“The conference program strongly links with the Pilbara Regional Investment Blueprint,” Mr Hill said.

“The iron ore and petroleum sectors will undoubtedly remain the backbone of the region’s economy as the largest provider of local employment and investment. However, there are opportunities for the Pilbara to become a global leader in mining innovation and technology, while demand for new minerals, such as lithium, are also bringing diversity to the region’s rich minerals and energy portfolio.

“These economic opportunities, as well as the revitalised communities and affordable living, are the characteristics that are shaping the new Pilbara as a place people are choosing to live, work or start a business.”

The New Pilbara Economic Development Conference is made possible with support from Major Sponsor, the Pilbara Development Commission and Local Government sponsors, City of Karratha and Pilbara Regional Council.

Further sponsorship by Woodside, Chevron, LandCorp, Horizon Power, the Pilbara Port Authority, Pilbara Meta Maya, and Indigenous Mining and Marine Services has proven that support for the Pilbara is high on the priority list for companies operating in the region, with expressions of interest to sponsor still being received just two weeks out from the event.

Mr Lally said it’s proof that businesses looking to leverage off this exciting climate of change could not afford to miss The New Pilbara Economic Development Conference.

“We expect more than 250 high-level delegates will attend The New Pilbara. There will be significant networking opportunities as well as the opportunity to find out the latest on the booming powerhouse region,” he said.

A full event program is available online at


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