It’s been yet another month with a reminder of the uncertain times we live in because of COVID-19.
Last year, we had to take our AGM online because of the early impacts of the pandemic. This time around I felt pretty sure we’d be able to have a physical event – until mid-Friday afternoon, when it was revealed there had again been community transmission in Perth and a three-day lockdown was put in place.
I’m very hopeful that next year’s AGM will go ahead as “normal” and that our planned lunch event with former Prime Minister John Howard can be rescheduled for a date in the near future. But events late last week reflect how quickly COVID-19 can impact our day-to-day lives.
I’d like to take this opportunity to again congratulate Fiona Hick on her appointment as CME President. I’ve got to know Fiona through her involvement as Vice President and on our Executive Committee and I can confidently say she will be an outstanding and passionate leader for our sector.
On the flip side, I’d like to thank Ivan Vella for his tireless efforts over the past year during his stint as President. To say Ivan took on the presidency during a challenging time would be an understatement but his leadership and advocacy for our sector has been first rate, and we wish him and his family all the best for their move soon to Canada.
Looking ahead from a CME perspective, one of the next major events on our agenda is the Federal Budget. As it stands I plan on being in Canberra on Tuesday week for the Budget and look forward to helping identify and share with our member companies the major aspects impacting our sector.
If there’s one thing that’s been highlighted in the past year other than the uncertainty of COVID-19, it’s that WA’s vast natural resources – in combination with our political stability and accompanying attractiveness as an investment destination – can be significant drivers of government revenue, jobs for West Australians (indeed, Australians) and the development of communities across our State.
Our hope is that May’s Federal Budget will reflect that contribution and help it further flourish in the future.