8 April 2010,


Gold Coast City Council will host the first round of economic development meetings for 2010 this month. CEO Dale Dickson (pictured) will hold the top civic job for another four years under the glare of public scrutiny.

What we can’t have, he says, is an economy that relies on the dominant industries of tourism and construction. We need to diversify our economy and implement the agenda for the next 10 years.

Council has released its 8-point strategy.

• Developed within the context of Bold Future, the Corporate Plan and other organisational strategies.
• Will be presented to Council at its first meeting on 8 February 2010
• Seeks to:
o diversify the regional economy beyond construction and tourism, focusing on nine key industries - marine, education, health and medical, tourism, ICT, environmental, food, sport, and creative
o have 30% of jobs in export and knowledge based industries by 2020
o create 8,000 jobs each year through to 2020
• Focuses on eight key programs:

Tech GC - encouraging school students to choose careers in Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths (STEM) with a long term goal to increase STEM related businesses on the Gold Coast

Pacific Innovation Corridor (PIC) - aims to create vibrant local business precincts and encourage investment within emerging greenfield precincts along the highway corridor (including Coomera, Helensvale, Varsity Station site) and light rail route (including Southport, Surfers Paradise and Broadbeach)

Capacity development - ensuring local businesses have the capacity to compete in national and international markets. Initiatives include incorporating eco-efficiency programs into day to day business operations by 2040 and working with education providers to ensure that appropriately skilled graduates are entering the local workforce.

Export - assisting businesses in accessing and growing their markets outside of the Gold Coast through a range of initiatives including Council’s export assistance program and international business development program.

Investment attraction - targeting suitable national and international businesses with an interest in locating new operations to the city by utilising Council’s investment attraction fund and by adding to existing programs such as the high performance sports attraction program and film attraction program.

Tourism - aims to maintain the Gold Coast’s position as Australia’s most popular tourism destination by working with government agencies and the private sector in identifying and building essential tourism infrastructure.

Advocacy and inter governmental relations - engaging with federal members, state members, government agencies, the private sector and the Council of Mayors organisation and advocating the issues facing the city and the opportunities that can be delivered through additional government funding.

Industry development – partnering with industry associations in delivering projects and events that are designed to attract business and investment to the City. Examples include the Sanctuary Cove Boat Show, Business Excellence Awards and Jobs Expo.

For the full interview with Dale Dickson, get a copy of the latest Gold Coast Business News, now available in more than 450 newsagents.






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