Official Opening of the 2017 Brisbane Truck Show
Ms Joan Pease MP, representing the Minister for Main Roads; Mr Andrew Powell, representing the Leader of the Opposition; other distinguished guests, ladies and gentlemen.
I extend a warm Queensland welcome to you all, in particular to those visiting our capital city and our State.
This is the 50th year since the first, modest event, then called the Queensland Truck Show, took place at Rocklea in Brisbane in 1968, with just 21 exhibitors.
This year’s Brisbane Truck Show boasts over 300 exhibitors, and takes up all three levels of this huge Brisbane Convention and Exhibition Centre.
Given those statistics, it is no surprise that this Show is the largest such event in Australia, drawing tens of thousands of visitors, including many from interstate and overseas.
Nor is it a surprise that the Show injects tens of millions of dollars into the Queensland economy and creates employment for hundreds of people.
I was therefore delighted to receive an invitation from Heavy Vehicle Industry Australia that I attend and officially open this event.
My attendance provides with a rare but warranted opportunity, on behalf of all Queenslanders, to acknowledge and support an industry so integrally entwined with the commercial and community advancement of our State, and our nation.
For this exhibition is not confined to the gleaming rigs on display, impressive as they are (and I very much look forward to having my picture taken in front of one for the vice-regal Twitter account)!
The exhibition also encompasses manufacturers, including our robust locally-based manufacturing sector, components, equipment and accessories, technologies, and services.
Then there are the awards ceremonies, an innovation centre, an apprentice challenge and even a children’s corner.
All of this highlights the breadth, depth and importance of the heavy vehicle industry to Australia – and particularly to the economy of our State with its huge distances between population centres.
On a personal note, the children’s corner reminds me of the deep fascination that children still have for these huge machines. I am certain that if my grandson, Alexander, were here today, his eyes would be out on stalks!
I congratulate Heavy Vehicle Industry Australia on reaching this 50-year milestone.
I acknowledge with gratitude the organisation’s half-century of hard work, commitment and persistence in bringing this event to such national prominence.
I take this opportunity also to thank the heavy vehicle industry for its enormous contribution, not always fully appreciated, to the lives of Australians.
It will be my great pleasure, shortly, to cut a ribbon – and a cake – to officially open the 2017 Show.
But for now, I thank you for your warm welcome and hospitality.
And I thank and commend HVIA on the 2017 Show’s respect for its history, and enthusiasm for the future. I wish you every success.