MITEZ held its 21st Annual General Meeting in Townsville on Tuesday and David Glasson was returned as MITEZ President for his ninth successive term.

All other board members retained their positions including McKinlay Shire Mayor, Cr Belinda Murphy who was re-elected for her third term as Vice President.

The AGM was opening by Townsville Mayor, Cr Jenny Hill who spoke about the city’s dependence on the MITEZ corridor which contributes so much and provides a lot of jobs for people of Townsville.

Speaking at the AGM, Mr Glasson told the audience that despite the difficulties of the lingering drought, a number of positives for the region have lifted confidence for the year ahead.

He said announcements including Glencore’s decision to keep the Mount Isa copper smelter and Townsville’s copper refinery operating until 2022, the release of tenders for an additional 239,000 ML of water from the Flinders River to develop an Ag Precinct, construction of the gas pipeline from Tennant Creek to Mount Isa and progress by a number of Shires to attract an investor to build a meat processing facility somewhere along corridor have boosted the region’s economic outlook significantly.

Keynote Speaker for the AGM was well known economic and social commentator, Dr Keith Suter whose address on MITEZ, the New Frontier set out to highlight how important Chinese Investment will be to get some large scale projects to occur in the region.

Mr Ben Cameron, an investment advisor from Bentley’s International spoke about the importance of project proponents preparing proposals to an adequate standard in order to attract serious investors. b Bentley’s developed the MITEZ Investment Preparation Toolkit that has been designed to assist project proponents to better understand what is required when preparing the material needed for investment attraction.

Following on the investment theme, Mr Warwick Agnew, Deputy Under Treasurer in the Queensland Government delivered a presentation on Market-led Proposals and explained how Queensland Treasury can assist to develop good ideas to become actual projects and stimulate economic growth.

Mr Glasson recognised the recent appointment of Cr John Wharton as the Interim Chair of the CRC on Developing Northern Australia, Mr Paul Woodhouse for his appointment to the CSIRO Strategic Advisory Committee and Cr Tony McGrady for his re-Appointment as Ambassador for North West Queensland to the Queensland Government.

With over forty people including Mayors across the corridor, industry and Government representatives and invited speakers there was a mood and sense of positivity for the future of the communities along the MITEZ corridor.