Impact Publications : AirCargo -252
Page 8 • AirCArgo AsiA-PACifiC • DEC 2017- JANUARY 2018 We can deliver the valve... and the gas processing plant Our unique cargo fleet gets everyone talking, not to mention our 26 years’ experience of keeping our customers’ businesses moving. Big or small, simple or complex, we make sure your cargo is always delivered as promised. From a little valve to the gas processing plant, we’re the only people you need to call. Our engineering and logistics experts promise you total peace of mind by managing your most complex transportation challenges door-to-door, anywhere in the world. So, whether you need to move the valve or processing plant, we’re with you all the way. www.volga-dnepr.com email@example.com there I was transferred to South Aus- tralia, Melbourne, back to Sydney and then Brisbane. Later, I worked in the Philippines for three years, managing a large global forwarding company. Returning to Australia in 2013, I found the industry had changed dramatically and that a lot of senior management positions were no longer available. Since then I held a few management roles before being asked to apply for the Chief Executive’s role with the CBFCA. What are your aims for the organi- sation? My priority is improved communi- cations with all the key government agencies, specifically the Department of Immigration and Border Protection and Department of Agriculture and Water Resources. I believe we can work closer with these organisations to keep abreast of global trade leg- islation and its impact on Australian trade. We will be further investing in our training and education to enable the CBFCA to offer the best in industry for our members. We are a not-for- profit (NFP) organisation and face increased challenges from private organisations coming into our space. The CBFCA is governed by stand- ards and conditions as a NFP that our competitors are not. I have members, they have subscribers - there is a big difference. We are restricted in our cost recovery program and I need to review where we go from here. We need to innovate our service stand- ards to our members. We no longer can rely on the past. We must look to the future and adapt to the new market. What issues are of most concern going forward? Jobs going offshore is a pivotal point for Customs brokers. If those jobs dry up - along with opportunities for promotion and progress - what is going to attract ‘new blood’ into the Customs broking profession? Another major concern is with Australian Border Force. There is a lot of uncertainty about the new Australian Home Affairs portfolio. No one really knows what is going to happen and who is going to be affected by the changes. The new portfolio – due mid 2018 - will cover ASIO, Federal Police, the Department of Immigration and Border Protection and is going to be a ‘super ministry’ - but we won’t know what it looks like until early next year. Most members of CBfCA are senior, with fewer young people choosing the forwarding and logis- tics sector as a career. How big a problem is this? We still have reasonable numbers of students joining the profession. Not as many as we used to attract, but the numbers are steady at this stage and we don’t see a need to panic. We also have improved our training courses and now include new sections on international trade which members can use within their company for employees to gain knowledge if they are new to the industry. What would you say to people looking at Customs brokering as a career? It’s looked after me for 37 years and I have enjoyed my career to date. It has not been without its chal- lenges, but the rewards are there. The camaraderie and personal interaction that was there in the beginning of my career certainly has changed as people don’t need to talk or fraternise as much - but I expect that is much the same in oth- er industries. EDI has changed our industry. Nowadays, many Customs brokers focus on niche markets to service or they develop special skills to give their businesses an edge. It could be in oil and gas, mining, perishables, automotive or pharma, but these days it pays to have a specialist string to your bow. But having said all that, word of mouth (reputation) is still the best sales tool in the industry. You recently moved head office from Brisbane to sydney. is CBf- CA planning a stronger role with government and industry? CBFCA has valuable expertise in its ranks and can make a greater contribution to government indus- try affairs related to trade. The industry moves at a fast pace these days and with regulatory and gov- ernment changes, we need to be where decisions are made fast and effectively. Some 65 per cent of our membership is based in Sydney / Melbourne, so it makes practical sense to base our admin as close to the action as possible. Any moves to resurrect closer ties with Afif and join forces? We have a great working relation- ship and strong association with AFIF and I look forward to making it stronger in the future. Australia’s economic expansion has accelerated, driven mainly by business and government spend- ing. How does CBfCA see 2018 shaping up? Forecasting in these times is not easy, especially when global politics are taken into the equation. Brexit, the US ‘America First’ policy, North Korea, Russia, China economics and again the Middle East problems all have the potential to impact on Australia’s economic performance. A lot depends on what industry you service. For example, oil and gas is relatively quiet. Mining ac- tivity is starting to pick up again in both WA and Queensland. The likes of Amazon and others going to dramatically change the landscape for retail in Australia. If Australian politics can sort itself out, I am quietly optimistic the Australian economy will perform reasonably well in 2018. interview Continued from previous page Many changes...