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Energy one of Australia’s competitive advantages

Posted on by Stephen from BAM

Australian Natural Gas

Australian Gas Rig

Australia has a massive amount of gas which could fuel vibrant and growing Australian based industry if there were the right policies in place. In fact the International Energy Agency ranks Australia’s gas resource among the world’s most abundant, I wll say that again AMONG THE WORLD’S MOST ABUNDANT.

Why then are we not maximising the benefits of this competitive advantage for the entire nation rather than a few reaping the rewards? Successive governments have failed to introduce policies which ensure that Australian industry and the people living in Australia benefit from this natural resource. There are even some ex politicians now working as lobbyists for the industry.

It is anticipated that in the next 12 months electricity prices will rise in Queensland by around 29% and in NSW by over 20%.

Gas producers that have been allowed to reserve critical natural resources exclusively for export have painted any attempt to promote a functioning domestic market as protectionism. The question has to be asked, who is running this show and who are the beneficiaries.

As Craig Arnold Managing Director of Dow Australia and New Zealand wrote recently ”

Our submission to the minister cited commentary by global analysts at Credit Suisse, which pinpointed the exceptional factors at work in the Asian gas export market: “The cosy club of LNG developers, super-majors and a few ‘specialists’ have fully embraced the buyer’s drivers, enjoying supernormal rent in good times and using crude price linkage to offset soaring unit development costs in recent years.”

The current policy settings have produced a situation in which Australia’s advantage in gas resources is allocated solely to the interests of those whose profit is maximised by maintaining the “cosy club”.

So long as market distortion is tolerated, Australians are denied the opportunities of a functioning domestic market for its abundant and valuable gas. We have instead a crude ratchet effect in which, from time to time, domestic prices are simply jacked up.”

It is way past time that our elected representatives ensure that Australia as a whole benefits from one of our most abundant natural resources and gaurantee supply of locally priced energy for both industry and dosmetic supply.

Posted in Australian Manufacturing, Businesses not doing the right thing, Imports and Exports, Uncategorized
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Where is the vision and support for Australian manufacturing?

Posted on by Stephen from BAM

Australian manufacturing

Is this the future of Australian manufacturing?

Other countries are being proactive in ensuring there is a bright future for manufacturing within their borders by giving incentives and support. Korea is one country very much on the front foot by introducing the U-Turn reshoring legislation.
What is below is copied from an article written by Richard A. McCormack appearing in The Manufacturing and Technology News, January 31, 2014 Volume 21, No. 2

“The South Korean government has passed a new law to entice Korean companies that have set up manufacturing operations in China and elsewhere to return home. The so-called “Act on Support for Korean Enterprises Reshoring from Overseas,” which the Korean government refers to as the “U-Turn Company Support Law,” was enacted in December 2013. It includes generous incentives and subsidies for companies to return production to Korea.
Here are the “details of support” of Korea’s U-Turn reshoring legislation along with the agencies involved in their implementation:
Corporate income tax cuts of 100 percent for five years and 50 percent for 20 years, Ministry of Strategy and Finance;
Tariff cuts for the introduction of new and used capital goods, Ministry of Strategy and Finance;
Subsidy on location for the equivalent of 15 percent to 45 percent of land sale price, rents (up to 50 million won per enterprise), Ministry of Trade, Industry and Energy;
Subsidy of between 3 percent and 22 percent of equipment investment, Ministry of Trade, Industry and Energy;
Allowing companies that reshore to move into free economic zones, “creating exclusive industrial complexes, giving priority when moving in to national general industrial complexes, Ministry of Land, Infrastructure and Transport and the Free Economic Zone Authorities;
Foreign worker visas: When rehiring local production management personnel at home, allowing the use of a “special activity visa.” Issuing visas to local production management personnel within 5 to 10 percent of domestic employees (up to 30 people) “considering the size of new employment at home,” Department of Justice;
Foreign workers: Preferential treatment of foreign employee limit in proportion to domestic employees (up to 50 people), Ministry of Employment and Labor;
Employment subsidy of 7,200,000 won per person within 1 year (up to 20 people), Ministry of Employment and Labor;
Financial support: Increase the guarantee ratio (85 percent to 90 percent) and discount on guarantee fees (from 1.2 percent to 1 percent), Korea Credit Guarantee Fund;
Export finance: Preferential treatment of export credit guarantee limits (up to twice) and up to 20 percent discount on guarantee fees (Korea Trade Insurance Corp.), considering U-Turn enterprises’ capital needs, Korea Trade Insurance Corp.
Customs Clearance Support: Free trade agreements — Utilizing support, such as rate reduction when importing raw materials, simplification of procedures for issuing the certificate of origin and free consulting provisions, Korea Customs Service.”

Posted in Australian Manufacturing
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Has Australian manufacturing got a future?

Posted on by Stephen from BAM

Australian solar panel manufacturing

Tindo Solar Panels

Australian manufacturing has been at crossroads before but not ever on such a national scale. Previous crossroads were because of new developments in equipment, machinery, consumer choice, natural disasters, depletion of resources or competition from other districts.

The crossroad that we face now is not homespun it is the result of things that are beyond our control. The high Australian dollar, inadequate and inappropriate policies, failure to enforce regulations like dumping of products, unsafe goods and protection of IP to mention just a few.

The power given to the “dries” or economic rationalists to determine and set public policy and the direction of our nation has not positioned Australia to tackle the changing global economy and to maximise the opportunities to ensure that our nation and people living here has a prosperous future. The “dries” believe that the market will decide what is best for this nation. Trusting the same market that led to the GFC.

One question is where has our elected representatives been in all of this? Why have our elected representatives allowed the “dries” to dictate the agenda and outcomes instead of directing the “dries” to find the solutions to enable the vision of the future Australia to be realised.

Current Free Trade Agreements (FTA’s) have failed the majority of Australian industry, the ones who have benefited are in the minority and if the test of what is in the best long term interest of Australia was applied the result would surley be a dismal fail. A case in point is the current Thailand FTA in which Thailand can import cars to Australia with virtually no duties whilst Australian car exports attract 50% duties.

How FTA’s can be signed which are so clearly not in the best long term interest of Australia is a disgrace.

Australia has opened up ourselves up to the global market in the hope that others will the same… and they haven’t. No-one else is playing by the same rules, we have left ourselves exposed by others who are following rules that put the best interest of their nation first.

Australian manufacturing is still at 9% of GDP.. more than mining and employing around 8 times the number of people than mining and has around the same % of GDP as manufacturing in Britain.

Has manufacturing in Australia got a future? We better bloody hope so!!!!

Posted in Australian Manufacturing, Uncategorized
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Saving SPC

Posted on by Stephen from BAM

Australian food processing

I believe what has really failed the SPC workers and the farmers who supply the produce to SPC has been decades of inaction and head-in-the-sand approach by our elected representatives. They have stood by and allowed inferior, subsidised, dumped products to be imported into Australia which has eroded Australian porcessors market share. They have allowed a duopoly to control around 80% of the grocery market giving them more power over Australian processors and farmers than they know what to do with. They have allowed poor labelling laws which lead to buyer confusion. Not securing locally priced energy for our industry which takes into account that our abundant eneregy is one of OUR COMPETITIVE ADVANTAGES, and for believing in the myth of the so called level playing field and for being sold a pup about globilisation. Do I believe governments should be handing out money to multi nationals… in general no…. but maybe they should give some money to compensate for decades of inaction for the sake of the workers and farmers.

Posted in Australian Manufacturing, Uncategorized
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Australian Grown Dried Fruit

Posted on by Stephen from BAM

Australian Grown Dried Fruit

Tropical Harvest

In these days when so much of the dried fruit on supermarket shelves are imported it is nice to know that there are Australian grown choices like the dried fruit from Tropical Harvest…

Tropical Harvest QLD pty ltd is the business name of Kelvin and Linda Abell’s fruit-drying operation in rural North Queensland.

They process 100% Australian raw fruit into delicious, sulphur-free and additive-free bitesize pieces to be enjoyed as a snack or used in a variety of cooking and baking methods. As the processor of the fruit, they are in a position to offer these delicious dried fruits directly to you, the customer.

Located just outside of Tully, named as “Australia’s wettest town”, in the foothills of the beautiful Wet Tropics of North Queensland World Heritage Site. Their rural location allows them to source the majority of their fruit from local growers, reducing the environmental impact of transport all of the excess water!

Tropical Harvest has been in business for a decade, gradually converting their banana and papaya plantation into a series of dryers and processing rooms. Over the years, their independent status has allowed them to experiment with different fruits and methods of drying – always ensuring that the fruit was dried without additives, preservatives or sulphur.

The online business has traditionally been a side project to their primary wholesale and face-to-face businesses; however, with more and more customers contacting them directly, they decided to offer a direct selling platform and was born!

And aren’t we ALL glad of that!!!!

Visit the Tropical Harvest BAM brochure, HERE. Click the brochure to visit the Tropical Harvest website.

Posted in BAM Members, Uncategorized
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Congratulations are in order.

Posted on by Stephen from BAM

Australian made clothing, jocks, socks, swimwear


Over twelve months ago now, the team from tommyrough had this mad idea that they’d start an online menswear store with a few loose guidelines

  • Keep it real

  • look for quality over quantity

  • actively promote as much Australian made as possible. is now well into their second year and the feedback and response that they get from their customers has been overwhelmingly supportive. They often hear from their customers…

“We want to buy Australian made”

Alan from tommyrough had this to say ”it’s been pretty obvious that if given the opportunity Australians want to buy Australian product and price is not always the deciding factor.

Our online collection has evolved over the past 12 months and I’m happy to say that all our socks are Australian made, in fact just recently tommyrough teamed up with Humphrey Law® and now offers luxurious men’s sport socks that cater to cycling, running or simply walking.”

And I can vouch for Humphrey Law socks, I own a number of pairs and they are fantastic.

Tommyrough has other great menswear on the go so keep checking the tommyrough website to time to see what’s on offer.

Click HERE to visit the tommyrough’s BAM brochure, click the brochure to visit their website.

Posted in BAM Members, Uncategorized
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Posted on by Stephen from BAM

Australian made padpod

padpod essential for all tablet users

padpod perfectly describes this must have accessory for people who use a tablet device like an iPad, eReader or smartphone to watch movies, play games, read books or attend to emails. You will do it a lot more comfortable with a padpod wherever you are.

A padpod can even be used to support books…. that’s right REAL BOOKS made from paper.

As with everything featured on the BuyAustralianMade website and BuyAusMAde app the padpod is made in Australia.

One of the many advantages with the padpod is that they are fully adjustable, so everyone can make the padpod perfectly fit their style.

Not only is the padpod story is a great one, the story starts by the padpod being invented by a 13 year old girl to help her grandmother use a tablet more easily. As the say the rest is history, with padpods now being sold both online and in outlets all around Australia.

If you want to use your tablet, smart phone or e-reader more comfortably then CLICK HERE to find out more and to order yours online…


Posted in BAM Members, Uncategorized
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ManufactureLink – Connect, Inform, Grow

Posted on by Stephen from BAM

Australian manufacturing

Helping Australian businesses Connect, Inform, Grow

ManufactureLink is owned and operated by AMTIL (Australian Manufacturing Technology Institute Limited) who are the peak body representing the advanced manufacturing industry in Australia. I am pleased to have ManufactureLink as a BuyAustralianMade member and to assist them in increasing awareness of their services that they offer Australian businesses.

Anyone who has ever had to source manufacturing services or technology knows that the process is difficult, time consuming and full of risk. The traditional methods of using phone, fax and even internet searches are slow, inefficient and provide insufficient information to make informed decisions.

ManufactureLink has 3 core powerful online tools to achieve this:

  •  Australia’s most comprehensive Industry Capability Directory where participants can locate providers of custom manufacturing processes, manufacturing services, service providers to industry participants, as well as suppliers of Manufacturing Technologies.
  •    A Request For Quote (RFQ) system where your manufacturing requirements or general enquiry can be broadcast online to the ManufactureLink provider (supplier) community in a secure and controlled manner who have the opportunity to respond with quotes or answers to your queries. Visit the ManufactureLin to register your free seeker (buyer) account today and start submitting RFQ’s in seconds.
  •   An intelligent and intuitive Newsfeed which provides not only the latest Industry News but also product/process news and manufacturing technology news.

To find out more about how ManufactureLink can help find Australian made components and Australian delivered services see the ManufactureLink brochure on the BAM website . . .  HERE

Posted in Australian Manufacturing, BAM Members, Uncategorized
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Australian made solar panels at the Tindo factory

Posted on by Stephen from BAM

Australian made solar panels

Prime Minister tours Tindo factory

Tindo Solar, the Australian designer and manufacturer of photovoltaic solar panels has joined BuyAustralianMade to help raise awareness of their Australian made solar panels.

The Tindo solar panels are made in a purpose built factory which was officially opened late 2012 by the Prime Minister of Australia, the Honorable Julia Gillard. Also present were the SA Premier The Honorable Jay Weatherill, Federal Member for Makin Tony Zappia and SA Minister Tom Koutsantonis.

The Tindo solar panel is a world class, high quality and innovative panel that is new to the Australian public. Managing Director Mr. Adrian Ferraretto describes the key attributes of the AC module as;

1.    Enhanced electricity production – traditional DC panels need to wired in “strings” with the performance of each string reduced by the lowest performing panel in each string. Research evidence confirms at least 15% additional performance with an AC panel.
2.    Owners of an AC module system can observe real time the performance of each and every panel via the internet or smart phone
3.    The micro inverter has an industry first 25 year warranty

The Prime Minister stated that two myths had been put to rest;

1.    that Australia cannot create a new innovative high quality manufacturing business and compete with overseas products. Tindo Solar’s success shows that our future lies in a high skills, high wage, high innovation economy
2.    that the world class Tindo Solar manufacturing plant shows that something could be done in the face of climate change through installation of a solar system like the Tindo Karra 240 which assist the environment while creating new manufacturing jobs in Australia  .

The Prime Minister also acknowledged the impact of cheap imported products on a business like Tindo Solar and stated that “I am aware of the issue and the Australian Government is currently exploring options to remedy”.

Tindo’s Manager of People and Business says that “the interest received so far by the public across Australia confirms our believe that Australians want to select an Australian made solar module that has quality and performance embedded in each panel and at a price not a great deal different to imported panels.

Mr. Inwood said “that above all we are proud to be offering the Australian public a panel that is made by Australian’s”.

It is a natural fit that Tindo Solar has joined BuyAustralianMade to promote and increase awareness of their Australian made solar panels. To see the range of solar panels made by Tindo – CLICK HERE

Posted in BAM Members
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Red Balloon

Posted on by Stephen from BAM


Red Balloon

Unique gifts, Unique experiences

CLICK HERE to see video

1000′s of great gift ideas for birthdays, anniversary’s, Christmas, Mothers Day, Fathers Day or just as a THANK YOU. Including rally car driving, hot air ballooning, cooking classes, gift boxes, romantic dinners or jumping off a cliff and everything in between.

Red Balloon is the newest BuyAustralianMade member. BuyAustralianMade helps Australian businesses like Red Balloon promote their Australian made products, Australian grown produce and Australian delivered services.

Red Balloon was established in 2001 by Naomi Simson and since then has collected a host of awards and accolades. Red Balloon aggregates 1000′s of gift ideas and experiences and makes it easy for people to buy that something special for an anniversary, birthday, Christmas, Mothers Day, Fathers Day or for no real reason at all apart from you want someone to experience something very special.

Red Balloon focuses on delivering a unique experience and unique gift ideas and making it easy for people to purchase and to use the voucher. The founder Naomi Simson has recently received accolades such as winning the 2008 national Telstra Business Womens Awards – Innovation, and 2011 BRW finalist for Entrepreneur of the year. She is particularly proud as being voted by her team as one of the top ten Great Places to Work in Australia and Hewitt ranking RedBalloon with a 90% employee engagement score for the past three years. RedBalloon delivered one million experience gifts in less than 10 years and is well on its way to changing gifting in Australia forever.

To find out what unique experiences Red Balloon offers check out the Red Balloon brochure page on

Posted in Uncategorized
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