City of Greater Geraldton
July 27, 2015
Geraldton is home to at least three major businesses with significant international relevance. They underpin a diversified and robust economy.
The CBH Group was established in 1933 and is Australia's largest cooperative. It is a leader in the Australian grains industry, with domestic and international operations in storage, handling, transport, marketing and grains processing. Around a quarter of WA's grain is exported through the port of Geraldton.
The Geraldton Fishermen's Cooperative was established in 1950 by a small group of fishermen with a vision to market their rock lobster worldwide. Sixty-five years on, it is the largest live rock lobster exporter in the world, a cooperative owned by around 200 fishermen.
Out of austerity comes opportunity. When times got tough in the live rock lobster industry, long-time fishermen, Mr Kannakoski senior and his son, Loui, took their boat north to try their luck on the oil and gas fields. Established in 2000 Bhagwan Marine quickly forged a reputation for excellence as a marine service provider for resources and the offshore oil and gas industry. Today, with around 180 vessels and offices around Australia and in London, the Geraldton based national leader also offers an integrated vessel subsea solution for resources and offshore oil and gas.
With a population of around 40,000 people, the output generated by the City of Greater Geraldton economy is estimated at more than $5 billion, with the top four industries in terms of output being mining, manufacturing, construction and real estate. Geraldton and the broader Mid West region host several state-of-the-art scientific and technology projects, such as the Australian Square Kilometre Array project, a technology park and radio astronomy. And I am very proud that they have had a significant NBN rollout, with the majority of the town now fibre to the premises.
Innovation is first nature in Geraldton through strong civic leadership, with people like Mayor Ian Carpenter, and through entrepreneurs and community-based organisations, such as the Pollinators. They promote collaboration and pollination of innovation from their CityHive. Geraldton youth are innovative and tenacious, which is why the city is home to so many young achievers. Technology and innovation have been a focus for Geraldton and there will inevitably be more investment in this area, together with tourism.
Today, as the local member, I am very proud to promote the City of Greater Geraldton as a means of illustrating diversity, innovation and economic sustainability, all against the backdrop of a very picturesque city and a fabulous coastline. Please come visit us—you are all very welcome.