The importance of defence to the Hunter region.
The past few months have seen a hive of activity in the defence sector at HunterNet. Once again, we hosted our annual Hunter Defence Conference, now in its ninth year. With a change in venue this year to the Crowne Plaza at Pokolbin, we were set to continue to build on previous years to provide an even bigger event.
The conference kicked off with an impressive and highly skilled aerial display form our local Red Bull racing pilot, Matt Hall. Matt was also our keynote speaker for our conference dinner, sharing with all who attended his journey to become one of the leading air racing pilots in the world. The following day was a full program, with the conference being opened by the Shadow Minister for Defence, the Honourable Richard Miles. The conference welcomed presentations from defence primes such as Lockheed Martin, various groups within the Department of Defence, as well as project updates for the F-35s and Project Jericho.
Once again, the conference provided an excellent networking opportunity for anyone who is working, or aspiring to enter, the defence industry sector. Planning is now underway for next year, which is shaping up to be even bigger as we celebrate 10 years.
Hunter Defence was also represented at Land Forces in Adelaide in early September. Being co-located on the Defence NSW stand, we were provided an excellent opportunity to display Hunter capabilities to all of those which visited the stand.
Our focus on defence opportunities for the Hunter Region continued through September, with HunterNet staff attending events in South Korea and Japan. The visit opened with a visit to DX Korea, a large trade show held in Seoul each year. Meetings held with defence primes across both countries identified opportunities for Australian businesses to gain access to defence global supply chains. The key message was that persistence, market intelligence and understanding cultural nuances was key to export success.
Lastly, in October we have welcomed Mr Tim Owen to the HunterNet team in the role of Defence Industry Adviser. Tim brings to the team a wealth of knowledge in the defence industry sector and is a much-welcomed resource to work with our members and other stakeholders with a focus on defence capabilities.
With the arrival of the first two JSF- 35As at Williamtown at the end of 2018, next year is shaping up to be a big year for the Hunter and our HunterNet members.
HunterNet Project Director.
On behalf of the members of HunterNet
IMAGE | The Hunter Defence Conference.
HunterNet is a dynamic business development network focused on opening doors to the global marketplace. They champion the combined capability of their members and promote the Hunter region as an international centre of manufacturing and engineering excellence.