A MONTHLY PUBLICATION OF THE AUSTRALIAN-THAI CHAMBER OF COMMERCE IN PARTNERSHIP WITH THE AUSTRALIA THAILAND BUSINESS COUNCIL www.austchamthailand.com March 2013
Success the Rice Way in this edition
The Australia-Thailand Institute: Supporting the AustraliaThailand Relationship Australia Unlimited Recognises Global Talent Business brief Free Trade Agreement with Malaysia in Force
ATBC Update 10th Anniversary Thai Culture and Food Festival
Embassy News Australia Day Celebration and Taste of Australia 2013 Launch
AustralianAlumni AustralianAlumni DRINKiQ Networking Event
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1/1 Note: __________________
Contents PATRON His Excellency James Wise Australian Ambassador to the Kingdom of Thailand
business briefs 6 Success the Rice Way 10 The Australia-Thailand Institute: Supporting the AustraliaThailand Relationship 11 Free Trade Agreement with Malaysia in Force 12 Congratulations to AustCham ‘Global Achievers’ Australia Unlimited Recognises Global Talent 13 Austrade Office for Myanmar
PRESIDENT John Anderson Meinhardt Portfolio: Regional Links VICE PRESIDENTS M.L. Laksasubha Kridakon Baan Laksasubha Resort Portfolio: Alumni
ATBC UPDATE 14 10th Anniversary Thai Culture and Food Festival
Belinda Skinner Top Talent Asia Portfolio: Communications and English Teaching TREASURER Leigh Scott-Kemmis DBM Portfolio: Advancing Trade and Commerce DIRECTORS David Bell Crestcom – Ra-Kahng Associates Portfolio: Speakers and Talks Khun Jurairat Jammanee HASSELL Portfolio: AustCham Ball Warwick Kneale Baker Tilly Portfolio: Community Services
18 Community services 18 AustCham Community Service Focus for 2013: The Beaumont Partnership Foundation 20 Voluntary English Teaching 21 AustCham Sundowners Community Services Sponsor – AIP Foundation embassy news 22 Australia Day Celebration 22 Taste of Australia 2013 Launch australian alumni 24 AustralianAlumni DRINKiQ and Cocktail Workshop Cover: Success the Rice Way – Australian Alumni
chamber Events 25 Joint Property and Infrastructure 25 Aussie Economy, Tax and Superannuation Seminar 26 AustCham Bangkok Sundowners
New members & members’ changes 27 AustCham Welcomes New Members From the Chamber Office 30 Message from the Executive Director
Sam Mizzi McConnell Dowell Portfolio: AFL and Eastern Seaboard Industry Sriram Narayan Qantas / British Airways Portfolio: Business Conference and Business Awards Alan Polivnick Watson, Farley & Williams (Thailand) Limited Portfolio: Legal Charles Wrightman Natural Ville & Lenotre Portfolio: Sponsorship Saeed Zaki, Ph.D. dwp Portfolio: Breakfast Briefings
From the Board
President’s Message EX OFFICIO Greg Wallis Senior Trade Commissioner, Thailand COORDINATORS Paul Wilkinson JVK International Movers Ltd. ESB Coordinator Email: email@example.com Trevor Dick Indochine Asset Management ESB Coordinator Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Harry Usher Lady Pie Phuket Coordinator Email: email@example.com Australian-Thai Chamber of Commerce 20th Floor, Thai CC Tower 889 South Sathorn Road Bangkok 10120 Tel.: +66 2 210 0216 Fax: +66 2 675 6696 firstname.lastname@example.org www.austchamthailand.com
Editorial Committee Belinda Skinner, Josh Hyland, Gary Woollacott, Domenica Agostino Marketing & Production Scand-Media Corp. Ltd 4/41-42 Moo 3, Thanyakarn Village Ramintra Soi 14, Bangkok Tel.: +66 2 943-7166/8 Fax: +66 2 943-7169 email@example.com Advertising Finn Balslev Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Contributions to Advance magazine are welcome. Please submit content to email@example.com by the first day of the month for publication in the following month’s magazine. Opinions expressed in Advance do not necessarily reflect the views of the Chamber. AustChamThailand Advance
y the time this goes to print there will be a new AustCham President and I will be joining the ranks of the ‘Past Presidents’. The two years in which I have been President has gone quickly. It has been a real privilege to have led the Chamber as President and also served as a Board member – in all for a total of six years. It has been a quite a lot of work at times; however it has also been very rewarding. I have made many friends through the Chamber and have found it often a welcome challenge from the usual day-to-day. It will probably feel a bit strange not to be such a close part of it all; however I am genuinely looking forward to filling that time with my family and to concentrating on Meinhardt business and some other pursuits. February was another busy month for AustCham. Sundowners saw a large turnout at the Eastin Grand Hotel. Our sponsors that night were MBMG and Berri Estates. The first Alumni event for the year was also a big success. The novel DRINKiQ & Cocktail Workshop was held at Radisson Suites. We were also pleased to support the official Berri Estates Thailand launch at the Australian Ambassador’s Residence. This was a great opportunity for many of the Chamber’s sponsors to meet and mingle with Siam Winery guests, as well as senior executives from the owners of Berri Estates, Accolade Wines in Australia. I have the pleasure of this month announcing some additional annual corporate sponsors that have come on board after some discussions in January. We are particularly thrilled to have at the Gold level PTT EP and the Beaumont Partnership. The Beaumont Partnership is of course well known to the Chamber and a very welcome addition to our Gold sponsor line-up. Over the past couple of years the Chamber has made a special effort to reach out to some of the large Thai investors in Australia (a relatively new and exciting development in the bilateral commercial relationship). Those efforts are now reaping dividends with two of those investors – Minor Group and now PTT EP – supporting the Chamber and becoming actively involved in our activities. Some members might be aware of the
Beaumont Partnership Foundation’s project to build a school in Chaiyaphum Province. You can read more about in the following pages. AustCham has decided to adopt the school project as our community services focus for 2013 so expect to hear more about it – and how you can contribute. It is certainly an ambitious project but it is also more than just an ‘idea’. The project is full steam ahead with some of the first buildings being finished and arrangements being put in place to accept the first enrolment of around 120 students. I had the opportunity of meeting our Foreign Minister Senator the Hon Bob Carr on 21 February during a brief stopover in Bangkok. Unfortunately the Minsters busy schedule meant that he was not able to speak to the wider membership but I did find him engaged and interested in how to promote Australian business in Thailand. In closing I would like to thank all those who have supported me over the past two years, including the AustCham staff and the Board. I wish the new Board every success and am happy to offer my support as needed.
John Anderson President, AustCham Thailand www.austchamthailand.com
By Mark Carroll
orporate social responsibility (CSR) is a feature of most contemporary businesses. It might include anything from a focus on employee welfare to large-scale projects that transform communities (see this month’s article, for example, on the Beaumont Partnership Foundation’s school project in Chaiyapoom Province). At least one company in Thailand, however, has taken CSR a step further. It has established what its Chief Executive Officer, Peetachai Dejkraisak (otherwise known as Neil), describes as a “social enterprise”. That is, a company where social outcomes are intertwined into all aspects of the business model. Yields, dividends and corporate growth are measured not just in dollars and cents, but in what some refer to as the ‘triple bottom line’ – people, planet, profit. At best, profit and social outcomes are symbiotic in a social enterprise. Whereas CSR programs have almost universal support as a concept, it is fair to say that the social enterprise model is still viewed with some scepticism. Better social outcomes –some might say – can be achieved by focussing business on business, and then channelling a percentage of profit to specific social activities. Mix youth and social enterprise together, and comments about rosy-eyed idealism can be expected. Such was the situation – but worse – when Neil had the idea to establish a new business in Thailand. Not only was he young. Not only did he want his business to be a social enterprise. With no prior experience his plan was to enter into the ancient agricultural industry of rice! Yet Neil and his two founding colleagues at Siam Organic Co. Ltd., Pornthida (Palmmy) Wongphatharakul and Apilux (Arm) Huvanandana, have proven the sceptics seriously wrong. Sceptics, we should add, that included Neil’s own parents. Today, Siam Organic has not just its own brand, but its very own variety, of premium quality organic rice. Jasberry is its name and it has a rapidly expanding fan-base of gourmet groupies not just here in Thailand, but internationally.
It took sheer determination, confidence and vision For Neil and his colleagues to take their business plan for Siam Organic from paper to production. These traits, says Neil, were not something that necessarily came to him naturally, however. They developed over time at Australia’s Canberra Grammar 6
School, the University of Melbourne, and Thailand’s Sasin Graduate School of Business Administration. Neil credits his educational background with not only giving him the knowledge and technical skills to follow his dreams, but also the personality and temperament necessary to see them fulfilled. Looking back on his time in Canberra Neil can clearly identify moments that left a deep impression on him. Some of those moments were what Australians typically call ‘character-building’. In other words: not easy. It was a challenge, for example, for Neil to leave his family in Thailand for faraway Australia. At fourteen he was the only Thai student at an all-boys boarding school. One of the first lessons Neil learnt was that it wasn’t Australian practice to share (some might say copy) homework. Whereas his previous school had put an emphasis on students handAustChamThailand Advance
management, water quality and soil rehabilitation. There is a focus in the course on sustainable development and Neil’s instinct told him that such skills were needed in Thailand. Neil describes his time in Australia as “life-changing”. Not only did his Australian “mum and dad” introduce him to agriculture, they also “taught me the Australian way. They kept me grounded. My [Australian] mum used to volunteer and that helped me realise the importance of giving back to the community. High school at Canberra Grammar allowed me to explore different interests, such as music and drama, and to expand my horizons. I have nothing but the highest praise for the school. Meanwhile, five years at Melbourne University gave me the technical foundation to do what I’m doing today. Looking back, it couldn’t have worked out any better.” With his Australian experience providing an essential foundation, the catalytic ingredient for the company Neil now leads was business school at Sasin. It was there events started prompting Neil to ask the question about his life and career focus. Sasin also provided him with the connections and pathways to turn his conviction into a business. Siam Organic Co. Ltd. was conceived when Neil and four of his classmates teamed up to enter a business plan competition. Key to their plan was to make social responsibility centre-
ing in work with all the right answers, the objective in Australia wasn’t just the end-product. It was more about how you got there and – most importantly – what you learnt along the way! Neil says the incident “taught me that individuality, being yourself and taking pride in your own work was important. It promotes critical thinking and helps you build confidence to follow your own journey”. Neil also recalls being given a hard time about his English ability. His answer was to acquire a dictionary, invest quite a few late nights and prove them wrong. And prove them wrong he did when he topped the English class. Determination and results, he found, also earned respect. It was also during high school that Neil started to develop a deep affection for the environment. His Australian guardians – friends of the family and his other “mum and dad” – owned a property in Cootamundra. Quintessentially Australian, the town is best known as the birth place of cricketing legend Sir Donald Bradman. Spending his holidays ‘on the land’ Neil was introduced to agriculture and found that he “just connected with nature”. That experience in rural Australia prompted him to go on to study environmental engineering and economics at the University of Melbourne. Melbourne University is Australia’s top engineering school and widely regarded as one of the best universities in the world. Beginning with just 15 students in 1861, the engineering faculty now boasts representatives from 100 countries and a student body of more than 3,000. Environmental engineering is not easy degree, requiring students to become expert in issues such as land use and management, salinity, water resources AustChamThailand Advance
By year five the intent is to have a growing network of 20,000 organic farmers [of the estimated two million rice producers in Thailand] who are not just selling rice to Siam Organic but who actually have a key stake in the business and its earnings. “We don’t just have a buy and sell relationship with our farmers. The more revenue we make, the more farmers we help. It is all inter-linked”, says Neil. “We also believe that if the farmers are happy they are producing better quality rice and increasing productivity. We think it’s also about sustainability as providing the farmers with a future also provides our business a future.” More than just wholesaling rice, Neil and his colleagues have plans for Siam Organic to produce value-added products. They already offer gift sets for those who want to share Jasberry and other healthy products with friends, family, colleagues or anybody else for that matter. Research is also underway into how the health properties of the Jasberry variety can be unlocked by incorporating it into various processed
By diversifying the business – and making the rice-growers part of it – Neil is confident he can help put more money into the pockets of the farmers while also helping them to hedge the risk of relying on agricultural output alone. piece of their conceptual company. As it turns out, it was that conviction and focus that led the group of students to their first major break. In the course of their research into organic rice in Thailand, they chanced upon a Kasetsart University researcher who had developed a new variety of ultra-healthy rice. The researcher was being courted by major agri-business, but preferred a partner that had a common life outlook, and shared a deep respect for the social cause and environment. Thus the partnership was sealed. After some trial and error in gathering a network of growers for their new rice, Siam Organic launched Jasberry to the market in December 2011. The name Jasberry reflects its properties – “the taste of world-famous Thai jasmine rice and the antioxidant benefits of berry fruits”. The rice is high in fibre and claims to have more antioxidants than blueberry and green tea. Studies have linked a diet rich in antioxidant-containing foods to a reduced risk of cardiovascular disease. And of the high antioxidant foods, berries are among the best. Jasberry also has less sugar than regular white rice and a lower Glycemic Index (GI) rating. Low-GI foods release glucose more slowly and steadily, keeping the body’s metabolic processes and energy levels balanced. Low-GI can also result in feeling fuller for longer periods of time after eating, thus promoting weight loss. Two years into the business plan that won them the mai Bangkok Business Challenge and Siam Organic has made a very strong start. But it is only in the early stages of its ambitions.
food and beverage products. By diversifying the business – and making the rice-growers part of it – Neil is confident he can help put more money into the pockets of the farmers while also helping them to hedge the risk of relying on agricultural output alone. Neil’s vision for Thailand’s rice industry is one where bestpractice organic agricultural methods put rice farmers ahead of the pack financially, in quality of product and in environmental sustainability. No doubt it’s an ambitious plan. But Neil has some experience in proving sceptics wrong. For more information on Siam Organic please see www. siamorganic.net or contact +66 85 252 1262. As a proud Australian university graduate Neil is a strong supporter of the AustralianAlumni program run jointly by AustCham and the Thai-Australian Association. See www. australianalumni.com for more information.
Eric Kenso Ward, ISB Class of 1979
International School Bangkok Bringing out the superhero in each of us since 1951. www.isb.ac.th
The Australia-Thailand Institute:
Supporting the AustraliaThailand Relationship Do you know what the following projects have in common? • Education: The Asia Education Foundation’s Australia-Thailand BRIDGE (Building Relationships through Intercultural Dialogue and Growing Engagement) school partnerships project, and the Discover Thailand University Scholarships • Media: Journalism undergraduate internships with Thai media • Community Programs: annual Next Generation Community Leaders visit to Australia, Swimsafe Thailand, Phuket Lifesaving Education Centre • Arts: the South-East Asian Writers Literary Festival • Public Policy: young Thai women MPs visit to Australia, Australian Studies Centre 60th anniversary symposium on bilateral relations • Business: AustCham Business Conference The answer: all of these projects are supported by the Australia-Thailand Institute. The Australia-Thailand Institute (ATI) was established by the Australian Government in 2005 to promote bilateral relations with Thailand and support institutional and people-to-people links. As such, the ATI is a relatively new addition to the bilateral landscape but during this time has supported projects that have made a real difference to the Australia-Thailand relationship. You may recognise the Institute logo from the recent AustCham Business Conference; the Institute’s Chairman, Mike Courtnall, was a speaker at that event. However, for the most part, the Institute is something of a quiet achiever, supporting numerous projects, programs and events each year, usually in the form of seed funding. Through our discretionary grants program, the ATI gives members of the community
the opportunity to seek modest funding for interesting projects which strengthen links between Australia and Thailand. Grants awarded through the Institute advance interests in a range of priority areas including education, science, culture, sport, women and girls and business with an underlying focus on encouraging the next generation of young Australians and Thais. Grant rounds are opened at least once a year (typically in March) allowing any Australian, Thai or Australian-Thai partnership to submit an online application to the Institute’s Advisory Board for consideration. ATI grant rounds have provided funding to projects such as education on marine stinger safety in Thailand and employing integrated pest management practices on agricultural properties to supporting Akha traditions in northern Thailand and shadow puppet theatre arts residencies. However, the ATI doesn’t just give grants. It fosters and promotes people-to-people links through targeted programs identified by the Advisory Board. These programs are often annual, recurring activities that target a specific area of the bilateral relationship. For example, the Institute hosts an annual media visit inviting journalists from a specific media field to travel from Thailand to Australia for one week. Last year’s journalists were from the sports journalism field; the year before the Institute hosted representatives from the arts and culture media. The Institute also tries to host at least one alumni event per year, bringing together past grant applicants, program participants, and significant stakeholders in the Australia-Thailand relationship. These have been hosted both in Australia and
Thailand, ensuring alumni from both countries can benefit from exchanging their experiences and making new contacts to further build people-to-people links. The Institute places a lot of emphasis on encouraging and cultivating the next generation of future leaders. Most of the ATI’s programs will try to engage the next generation so that they can take the experiences and linkages they have gained through the ATI with them throughout their careers. Examples of programs currently supported by the ATI include the Discover Thailand Scholarships which provide top-up funding for Australian university students to study in Thailand, the Australia-Thailand BRIDGE school partnerships program, and the ATI’s annual flagship program the Next Generation Community Leaders visit which bring young Thai leaders to Australia for a program focused on multiculturalism. The next ATI Advisory Board meeting is scheduled for late March where board members will consider their 2013/14 business plan, determining the Institute’s priority areas for the coming financial year, and deciding which annual targeted programs to run. This meeting will also consider the recommendations of the Australia in the Asian Century White Paper to ensure they are incorporated into the ATI’s forward planning. More information on the ATI, its programs, and grant funding can be found at our website: www.dfat.gov.au/ati. The ATI Secretariat is always happy to answer your questions and can be contacted via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Free Trade Agreement with Malaysia in Force
ustralia’s ground-breaking free trade agreement with Malaysia entered into force in January, opening up opportunities for exporters and investors across most sectors. From the beginning of the year, 97.6 per cent of Australian goods currently exported to Malaysia are eligible for tariff-free treatment, rising to 99 per cent in 2017. Service providers - including universities, schools, banks, insurers, telecoms companies and accountancy firms - will also benefit, with increased access to the Malaysian market and an easing of rules on control of Malaysian businesses. Trade and Competitiveness Minister Craig Emerson said the Malaysia-Australia Free Trade Agreement (MAFTA) would further integrate the Australian economy into the fast-growing Asian region. “It builds on the benefits already flowing from the ASEAN-Australia-New Zealand FTA to open up new opportunities for investors and exporters,” Dr Emerson said. “This high-quality agreement reduces trade barriers, increases transparency and provides greater business certainty, making it easier for Australians to do business in Malaysia.” Dr Emerson said Australian exporters would benefit from improved market access for a variety of goods and services, including liquid milk and processed foods, automotive vehicles and parts, iron and steel. Under MAFTA, the remaining Australian tariffs on Malaysian goods have been removed, helping lower the cost of consumer goods for Australians. MAFTA is Australia’s seventh free trade agreement. Agreements are already in force with Chile, New Zealand, Singapore, Thailand, the United States and the multiparty ASEAN-Australia-New Zealand FTA. The Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT) has launched a web page dedicated to the Malaysia-Australia Free Trade Agreement (MAFTA) for Austral-
ian businesses considering trade and investment opportunities in Malaysia.
import goods. Tariff schedules can be found under the Official Documents tab, Annex 1.
The DFAT website contains a brochure explaining the benefits of the agreement, which came into effect at the start of the year. It also has detailed information, including a guide for businesses on how to make use of MAFTA to export or
Information on market opportunities and insights for Malaysia in the areas of agriculture, ICT, health and medical and oil and gas will soon be available on the Austrade website.
Congratulations to AustCham ‘Global Achievers’
Australia Unlimited Recognises Global Talent Andrew Biggs, Thailand Journalist, author and TV personality, Andrew Biggs Academy
round one million Australians are offshore at any one time, most of them on a long-term or permanent basis. Far from being a brain drain, our ‘gold-collar’ diaspora plays an important role in Australia’s interaction with the world. They share Australian expertise, ideas and ways of doing things, project a compelling image of Australia and provide networks and connections for Australians and Australian organisations. Australian expats tend to be well educated, well connected and successful. Some of Australia’s most talented, productive and motivated citizens chose to spend time building their careers away from home. Many retain a strong sense of Australianness and plenty of good-will towards their country of birth. The warmth is returned by Australians at home who are generally very positive about expats, and value the economic and reputational benefits the Australian diaspora brings. Some of our most successful countrymen and women are household names. But most are not. The Australia Unlimited: Global Achievers list recognises 50 Australians living and working abroad who have come to our attention. Some are at the pinnacle of their careers and others are just starting out. What they have in common is creativity, energy and an Australian passport. Tech entrepreneurs, executives with multi-nationals, investment bankers, journalists, artists, designers and advertising creative, humanitarians, academics and exporters all feature on this impressive list. From 29 year-old
Australian journalist Andrew Biggs arrived in Bangkok in 1989 on a two-day stopover and has been there ever since. In the past 24 years he’s become a high profile Thai-speaking farang (foreigner) working as a journalist, radio commentator, TV host, author, publisher and founder of English language school, the Andrew Biggs Academy. In 2005 Biggs was the first foreigner awarded the Phetch Siam Award for excellence in using the Thai language, evidenced by some 16 books he’s written including the 1997 bestseller How to Speak Thai Like a Farang.
Paul Kenny, Thailand CEO Minor Food Group Based in bustling Bangkok, Paul Kenny has led Minor Food Group PCL as CEO for over 12 years, following various management positions he held in MFG since 1993. He is responsible for driving the overall strategic direction and growth of the company to where it is today. Currently the company operates more than 15 brands and a network of more than 1,300 restaurants in 16 countries internationally. He is a member of several boards, including Minor International PCL, listed on the Stock Exchange of Thailand.
big data entrepreneur Ben Keighan, to 82 year-old Stuart Devlin known as the world’s best silversmith, Australians are achieving extraordinary things in every corner of the globe. The full list of the Top 50 Global Achievers can be viewed on the Australia Unlimited website www.
australiaunlimited.com/society/australiaunlimited-global-talent. AustCham Thailand would like to congratulate two of our members who feature on this list, Andrew Biggs and Paul Kenny.
Austrade Office for Myanmar
ustralia will open an Austrade office in Myanmar this year as part of the Gillard Government’s drive to help businesses break into and expand in Asia’s emerging and growth markets. Trade and Competitiveness Minister Craig Emerson said the office would be opened in Yangon, Myanmar’s commercial centre. When fully operational, it will be staffed by a Trade Commissioner supported by a number of locallyengaged business development managers. “Recognising and responding quickly to new opportunities in Asia’s growth and emerging markets is central to putting the Asian Century White Paper into practice,” Dr Emerson said. The Australian Government last year lifted travel and financial sanctions against Myanmar in response to political reforms in the country. Austrade’s presence in the country will consolidate this new commercial relationship while giving
assistance to Australian companies looking to invest in the country. Myanmar is strategically located between growth centres such as India, China and Thailand, and is South East Asia’s largest mainland nation. The country has extensive natural resources, including oil and gas, and a growing population. “This is another step in the Government’s commitment to expand Australia’s diplomatic and commercial footprint in Asia,” Dr Emerson said. The Government also announced in the White Paper the appointment of a dedicated Ambassador to ASEAN, to be based in Jakarta. Last year it announced an Austrade-managed consulate in Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia and plans to open a new consulate in Chengdu, China. Also last year, the Government announced
that a new embassy would be established in Mongolia, while Austrade also opened a new consulate in Bogota, Colombia and created new trade commissioner positions in Accra, Ghana and Sao Paulo, Brazil. The Austrade office in Yangon will help Australian companies establish a presence in Myanmar’s promising but challenging market, forecast to grow at around six per cent in 2013. “This new office will support Australia’s businesses in education and training, financial services, telecommunications, infrastructure, mining and tourism,” Dr Emerson said. Under reforms introduced by Dr Emerson, Austrade has concentrated more of its resources in growth and emerging markets, where its support can make the most difference to the success of Australian businesses in the Asian Century.
You are invited to our
Jungle Picnic Saturday 9th March 2013 The fun starts at10.00am and finishes at 1.00pm Join us for a morning of delicious snacks, treasure hunt, games, prizes and art & craft activities. Just 200 Baht per family and ideal for children 2-6 years old. All are welcome!
Free shuttle bus to and from the MRT at the Thailand Cultural Centre, Exit 2. Reserve your tickets today! Visit our KIS Facebook page for reservations and event schedule. http://www.facebook.com/kisinternationalschool Email: email@example.com
10th Anniversary Thai Culture and Food Festival Melbourne, Sunday 17 March 2013
TBC’s immediate Past National President, Robert Taylor, a founder of Melbourne’s annual Thai Culture and Food Festival has seen it grow to become the largest multi-cultural event at Federation Square in the heart of Melbourne since the inauguration in 2004. Last year the one-day Festival showcasing Thai Culture and Food as well as travel and tourism attracted over 64,000 visitors. Melbourne has a small Thai community and also a transient population of Thai Students so most of the visitors are local Melbournians who get to experience a day in Thailand. This year’s festival on Sunday 17 March 2013 celebrates the 10th Anniversary and major sponsors include Singha Beer, Melbourne City Council, Bangkok Metropolitan Administration (BMA) and CP Foods – together with Tourism Authority of Thailand, Victorian Multicultural Commission, Thai Airways, Fed Square, and Tangola. In prior years the Australia Thailand Institute provided seed funding support. On the main stage at Fed Square this year the festival will showcase Thai dance, music, martial arts and other performances from entertainers specifically brought to Australia courtesy of Bangkok Metropolitan Administration. The Joe Louis traditional Thai puppets will also appear at various Festival locations and the local Thai’s will participate in the Buddhist ceremony and the Thai Beauty Contest. Over in the Fed Square Theatre “The Edge” there will be Thai Cooking demonstrations, Buddhist meditation, Joe Louis puppet shows and Thai Artist talks (including a panel discussion on Contemporary Thai Art and other shows). In Fed Square a Thai Village will be set up which will include demonstrations of fruit carving, musical instruments, Thai language, Thai kids games, Thai Products and much more. The Swanston Street Forecourt will also host the CP Foods marquee where they will feature their local
featuring Contemporary Thai Art installations from Thai artists living in both Thailand and in Australia. In the Flinders Street Amphitheatre there will be a pop up art gallery in the form of a shipping container to showcase artist’s work with screenings of media art being featured on the Fed Square Screen. This will be running from 13 – 20 March 2013 together with two other exhibitions happening in Melbourne as part of the project timed to coincide with the Festival: products sold at Costco and Woolworths. On the River Terrace along the River Yarra will be 20 Thai restaurant stalls including the Singha Beer Garden which will feature a live sound stage showcasing great live music from a local band with the ever popular annual Thai Tiffany show closing proceedings.
• RMIT University School of Art Gallery Two week exhibition at the RMIT University School of Art Gallery • Screen Space Three week exhibition at Screen Space, to screen a selection of video works by contemporary Thai artists, between 7 23 March
This year the Festival is also partnering with the Australia Thai Artists Interchange - Hua Krathi Project (supported by ATI, Vic Multicultural Commission, RMIT and Melbourne Universities www.atai.com.au)
The Festival works with the Thai Community through the participation of the various Thai Temples in Victoria; The Thai Students Association; the Thai Language School, etc. Robert Doyle, the Lord Mayor of Melbourne and the festival patron, HE Maris Sangiampongsa, The Ambassador of Thailand to Australia will officially open the Festival. So if you are in Melbourne and want to feel like you never left Thailand come along from 10am – or if you can’t attend –tell your Melbourne friends and family to make a point of visiting to experience a small taste of Thailand. You can find out more at www.thaifestvic.com or “like” the Festival at www.facebook.com/thaifestvic updated daily; follow twitter feed at www.twitter. com/thaifestvic and watch videos at www. youtube.com/user/thaifestvic
Letter from the President
he ATBC Board met for the first time in 2013, and have made the decision to embark upon a rigorous review of the organisation, its role, and business model. We believe the business environment has radically changed and for our Council to remain vibrant, relevant and sustainable we need to be not just across, but ahead, of this curve and explore a new model of client service delivery. In the era when our Council was formed, Australian trade groups generally focused on the promotion of export to developing countries in the region, and information was primarily available through face-to-face networks. Now, due to the accessibility of information through social media, online forums and virtual net-
works, our member services and funding models will need to evolve. The nature of business between Thailand and Australia has also changed. Thai investment in Australia is larger than Australian investment in Thailand by a significant order of magnitude. Multilateralism and market integration is increasing, and Thailand is a hub of a radically changing Greater Mekong Sub-region, and one of the most dynamic members of the coming ASEAN Economic Community (AEC). We will be consulting with key ATBC stakeholders including government, peak business bodies, ATBC members and the broader business community in the coming months. We welcome any input, feedback or contributions you would make and look forward to engaging in the process.
Tamerlaine Beasley National President Australia Thailand Business Council
Celebratin g a decade of excellence 2003-2013
A leading private international school in the centre of Bangkok, internationally accredited by the Council of International Schools, New England Association of Schools and Colleges, and the Office of National Education Standards and Quality Assessment. Sukhumvit 53 | www.bkkprep.ac.th | Phone 02-260-7890 Adjacent to Thonglo BTS Skytrain Accredited by and Affiliated with
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AustCham Community Service Focus for 2013:
The Beaumont Partnership Foundation
he Beaumont Partnership Foundation’s ‘School for the underprivileged’ is a refreshing and inspiring project that aims to create a brighter future for the more unfortunate children in the Chaiyaphum Province of Thailand. Without a sound education, millions of Thais’ are unable to reach their development potential and improve financial positions for themselves or families. Evidently, there is a lack of opportunities available and a fundamental need for quality education needs to be met. Thus, as a means to facilitate this need, The Beaumont Partnership Foundation is in the process of a development that will not only enhance the minds of the children, but also hopefully improve the relationships within local families entirely. Effectively, we should see a positive transformation and a pattern in behaviour in the community as a whole, resulting in a better nature and atmosphere within these households. With a virgin land largely untouched by urbanism, gaining its primary income on Agriculture; the school development is designed to be sensitive to its surroundings. This demonstration of sustainable building not only aids the neighbouring environment, however it is used to accentuate the importance of living in a greener atmosphere to students. The school is submerged in a series of sustainable features that will provide the building with natural air flow as well as helping with natural coding. In order to maintain a structure that will withstand the notoriously violent climate in the area, it acknowledges and utilises the traditional Thai weather defences. This is done through the use of materials such as rammed earth, concrete and over-sailing steel hypar roof structures.
Effectively, these techniques provide shelter and also emphasise a sense of Thai culture through architecture. Albeit the design and construction of the school takes part in the overall success of the development, its predominant aim lies with the students and the families. It’s designed to encourage a new method of learning, enhanc-
ing a growth in intelligence as well as creating an active, joyful and innovative experience. Furthermore, in order to improve living standards, the parents and community will be encouraged to engage in activities and teach skills that can be passed to generations to come. Specifically focusing on the students, the project aims to enrich their lives through
identifying individual fortes or skills and improving them, as well as teaching the art of culture and the importance of respect and honesty. The development will hopefully capture the essence of unity between the students, as they will not only be thoroughly educated, but will have opportunities to create relationships and break social boundaries.
group, and the Pace Development Corporation Public Co. Ltd. from Thailand. Undoubtedly, these contributions are already making the project even more successful, further showing the capacity of its potential.
In order to increase the possibility of the ever-progressing project, you can help by providing financial donations payable in a lump sum, installments or in forms of materials and manpower efforts. Any helpful contribution will further consolidate the higher levels of education provided for future generations and healthier lifestyles for these families.
The movement towards a ‘change through education’ is further expanded through the ‘Sponsor a Child’ initiative. This six year commitment involves a donation of $US 1,000 per year, where donors are able to monitor the progress of a specific child. The six years will provide students the teachings of four significant factors involved in the programme; Sustainability, Agriculture, Community Business Park and Hospitality vocational training.
It is in firm belief that the Foundation has already been graced with the green light generously given by two major donors, Howard Scott and Partners, a Swiss investment and banking
Additionally, a website for the Beaumont Partnership Foundation has been devised to further capture the hearts of contributors and hopefully expedite the project entirely. The website con-
tains the objectives of the Foundation towards the school project and breaks it down in components such as construction, concept, and development and so on. Moreover it provides contact details for easy access for further insight on the school project or any other queries. The Foundation is certain that a better nature and atmosphere will occur in the families of the underprivileged; and more importantly, a quality education is being provided for the children. With the aim of creating a continuous selfsustainable development through business enterprises, students will hopefully be able to utilise the skills and knowledge they gain to purse future aspirations. It is predicted that by the end of 2015, amidst the Northeastern sector of Thailand will sit what could be seen as the epitome of humanity and social change.
Voluntary English Teaching Saturday 16 February at Wat Phra Patharnporn School, Sri Ra Cha AustCham Thailand sponsors a number of schools in the provinces of Chonburi and Rayong. Part of this support includes the provision of English classes, which are conducted by volunteers from our community. Volunteers work with small groups of children aged between 5 and 12 years and play simple games and activities which encourage the children to use the English language. No prior teaching experience is necessary, just a lot of enthusiasm! If you are interested in becoming a volunteer, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org
AustCham Community Services Sponsor – AIP Foundation
here are many worthy charities around Bangkok and AustCham would love to be able to assist them all. Unfortunately we can’t! The Community Services Subcommittee have instigated an initiative to endeavour to support some of our member related charities. Our aim is to promote various charities to our members in order to raise awareness or where our members are perhaps looking for a new CSR partner – a type of CSR matching service. Each month part of your Sundowners entry fee will go towards the monthly CS sponsor. Each charity will have presented to, and been approved by, AustCham’s Community Services Subcommittee. In Thailand, motorcycle crashes are the second leading cause of death for young
people. Beyond the devastating human losses, the economic cost is nearly three per cent of GDP. Although 75 per cent of road crashes involve motorcycles, the helmet use rate is alarmingly low. The time is right for concerted action to combat road injuries and deaths in Thailand. The Thai government’s commitment to achieving 100 per cent helmet use both represent amazing opportunities to bring this issue to the forefront of the national agenda. For twelve years, AIP Foundation, a US and Thailand registered non-profit organization, has implemented innovative and proven programs to reduce road traffic injuries and fatalities in Southeast Asia. In partnership with Ministry of Inte-
rior, AIP Foundation is implementing the Thailand Helmet Vaccine Initiative. AIP Foundation’s multifaceted approach includes activities targeting children, parents, law enforcement, and the general public through helmet donations, public awareness campaigns, safety trainings, childhood education, and community engagement. To find out more about how your company can become involved in these tangible, lifesaving programs, contact info@ aipf-thailand.org or (66-2) 676 0274. Alternatively, donations can be made directly to: Siam Commercial Bank account number 101-235276-6, Sathorn Branch, account name “Asia Injury Prevention Foundation”.
Australia Day Celebration Australian Ambassador to Thailand Mr James Wise and his wife Teresa Wise welcomed distinguished guests to the Australia Day reception held recently at the Grand Hyatt Erawan Hotel. Among distinguished guests were General Songkitti Jaggabatra AM, Former Chief of Defense Forces; Police General Chavalit Yodmani AO, Former Chairman of Amata Corporation PCL, and his wife Mrs Tempun Yodmani; Mr Chanin Vongkusolkit, CEO of Banpu Public Company Limited; Mr Sudhitham Chirathivat, Executive Chairman, Central Group of Companies; Khunying Kingkaew Uathavikul; and Dr Richard T Ekai, Ambassador of the Republic of Kenya and Dean of the Diplomatic Corps.
Taste of Australia 2013 Launch Australian Ambassador to Thailand HE Mr James Wise and President of Central Food Retail Mr Alistair Taylor recently launched ‘Taste of Australia 2013 : Australia Unlimited’ at Central Food Hall, Central World together with Australian Celebrity Chef Marion Grasby from Masterchef Australia. Taste of Australia 2013 brings an array of top quality Australian products to Thai consumers at 56 Central Food Halls and Tops market nationwide until 13 March 2013. From left: Mr Julian Sebastian Gatenby Devies, Executive Director, Thammachart Seafood; Mr Tong Dhiranusornkit, President & CEO, Kim Chua Group; Mr Nick Reitmeier, Vice President – Buying International Food & Wine, Produce and Own Brand, Central Food Retail; Mr Greg Wallis, Senior Trade Commissioner to Thailand, Australian Trade Commission; Ambassador Wise; Mr Alistair Taylor; Marion Grasby, Marion’s Kitchen; Ms Phattaraporn Phenpraphat, Vice President of Marketing & Public Relations; Mr Sarakit Chutikul, Business Development Manager, Australian Trade Commission.
Corporate branding for corporate tables is available; ask the team for more details. Reserve your tickets now +66 2 210 0216, email@example.com
AustralianAlumni DRINKiQ and Cocktail Workshop Thursday 21 February 2013 at Radisson Suites Bangkok AustralianAlumni hosted its first networking event of the year with the help of the knowledgeable and entertaining team from Diageo Moet Hennessy Thailand. They talked to guests on the facts of alcohol and its effects, how to drink responsibly and conducted a â€˜make your ownâ€™ cocktail workshop with their very talented mixologists. Alumni and their guests immensely enjoyed the unique networking evening thanks to the Diageo team and venue sponsor Raddsion Suites Bangkok.
Joint Property and Infrastructure Tuesday 12 February 2013 at Rembrandt Hotel & Towers The British Chamber of Commerce (BCCT), the South African-Thai Chamber of Commerce (SATCC) and AustCham together hosted a Joint Property and Infrastructure evening presentation with Mr James Pitchon, Executive Director of CB Richard Ellis (Thailand) Co., Ltd. Mr Pichton, who has been with CB Richard Ellis since 1987, is responsible for servicing property requirements of multi-national corporations and the coordination of more than 1,000 multi-national corporation property transactions in Thailand over the last nineteen years. The presentation centred around his thoughts on the topic of “Outlook for the Thai property market”.
Aussie Economy, Tax and Superannuation Seminar Wednesday 6 February 2012 at Eastin Grand Hotel February Sundowners sponsor MBMG Group hosted a ‘Super-man and Superwoman’ seminar before Sundowners presented by visiting Australian Tax and Superannuation expert Scott Douglas and leading global portfolio manager Joanne Baynham. Attendees listened to an overview of the Australian economy and an update on Australian tax and superannuation issues.
AustCham Bangkok Sundowners Wednesday 6 February 2013 at the Eastin Grand Hotel Sathorn AustCham welcomed the New Year at the first Sundowners of 2013 in the stylish ballroom of the Eastin Grand. Members and guests had an enjoyable night of networking and catching up, with thanks going to our corporate sponsor MBMG for making the evening possible. Continuing on from the new Community Services initiative implemnted last year, The Asia Injury Prevention Foundation (AIP Foundation) were present to enlighten guests on the importance of road safety and helmet wear. You can read more about the wonderful work they do in the Community Service pages.
1) Scott Douglas, MBMG Group; Joanne Baynham, MBMG Group; Paul Gambles, MBMG Group; John Anderson, AustCham President, Meinhardt 2) Saeed Zaki Ph.D., dwp; Karen Hochhauser, APM Group; Rungkamol Hongskul, APM Group; Porntip Utsahaphan, Samitivej Hospital 3) Rafal Furdzik, DNNDirect Software Development; Amy Byrum, RSM Advisory; Katarzyna Filas, JAC Recruitment Thailand; Anna Maria Berger, JAC Recruitment Thailand. 4) John Casella, PKF Tax Consulting Service (Thailand) Ltd; Neil Chiu, Allied Pickfords; Graham MacDonald, MBMG Group. 5) Bruce Cohen, Capital Relocation; Natchanan Dechaakhrawanit, Allied Pickford; Sira Bencharit. 6) Warwick Baglin, Meinhardt; Sisi Kochakorn Sookprayoch, Meinhardt. 7) Timothy J. Beaumont, The Beaumont Partnership; Teresa Wise; H.E. Mr James Wise. 8) Belinda Skinner, AustCham Vice President, Top Talent Asia; Shane Torr, PeopleServe Asia; Timothy Jones, PeopleServe Asia. 9) Ian Harriss, The Clubhouse Sports Bar&Grill; Richard Jackson, RLC Boutique Recruitment Solutions. 10) Anucha Chintakanond, Asst.Prof; Noppawan T, Krung Sri Ayudhaya Bank; Ampa A, Poultry Association. 11) Wantana Tanya, The Imperial Queenâ€™s Park Hotel; Panida Kaewpradit, McConnell Dowell; Lloyd Wilson, Berkeley International School. 12) Chris Thatcher, British-Thai Chamber of Commerce; Jurairat Jammanee; Rungnapha Kaewduangsri, Santa Fe Thailand. 13) Ratanawadee H. Winther, AIP Foundation; John Anderson. AustCham President, Meinhardt; Ekjaree Thanasawangkul, Dataconsult. 14) Steve Callerame; David Norcross, KPMG Phoomchai Audit; Johan Vandebeek, Applitek.
NEW MEMBERS and members’ changes
Kingston Holdings Co., Ltd 11,14,16 Soi Sukhumvit 11 Sukhumvit Road, Klongtoey-Nua Wattana, Bangkok 10110 Phone: +662 651 1200 Fax: +662 651 3840 Website: www.kingston-holdings.com
Representatives: Ms Patsada Satthacharoen - Marketing and PR Manager Ms Pichayada Pavarakulsiri - Public Relations Executive Background: Currently, the group operates executive serviced apartments in Bangkok and these six properties are strategically located in Sukhumvit area with approximately 1,281 rooms. The Kingston Holdings is managed by Compass Hospitality Co., Ltd. Products / Service: • Grand President, Executive Serviced Apartment • Royal President, Executive Serviced Apartment • President Park, Executive Serviced Apartment • President Solitaire • President Palace • Kingston Suites
Steve Swaine Project Management 1A Blackwood Drive, Wonga Park Melbourne, Victoria 3115 Australia Phone : +613 9722 2367 Email : firstname.lastname@example.org
Representatives: Mr Steve Swaine - Director Background: Steve Swaine operated a successful Commercial and Industrial Building Company in Melbourne, Australia for over 26 years until the sale of
the company in 2010. Previous clients include companies such as Toyota Motor Corporation Australia, ARB Corporation, Max Kirwin Mazda, Bunnings, Australand and DEECD to name a few. In 2011 Steve Swaine Project Management was engaged by ARB Corporation to Project Manage the construction of their new 18500 sq. m factory and distribution warehouse in the Eastern Seaboard Industrial Estate and have since developed the business to extend these services to other Australian Companies undertaking relocation or expansion in Thailand. Products / Services: Steve Swaine Project Management offer Construction and Project Management Services to Australian or other western companies wishing to relocate into Thailand or expand their existing facilities in Thailand. The services offered include: • Assistance with land assessment Procurement of Architectural and Engineering Services • Procurement of Building Contractors or Design and Build Contractors • Preparation of a design brief • Contractor selection and tendering • Assessment of tenders • Project Management during the construction phase through to handover
Viking Power Systems Co., Ltd 242/44 Moo 3, Tessabahn 2, Phala, Ban Chang, Rayong 21130 Phone : +6686 113 0027 Fax : +6638 602 244 Website: www.vikingpowersystems.com Email : email@example.com
In 2007 Viking’s new manufacturing base at Sattahip commenced production of acoustic enclosures, industrial exhaust mufflers and generating set accessories such as test load banks. The Sattahip location also allowed them to expand into supplying diesel power generation packages to the local offshore oil and gas industry. The product range is sold in a number of countries throughout the Asia Pacific region with the majority of exports still destined for Australian customers. Manufacturing is currently split approximately 60 per cent export and 40 per cent Thailand with the majority of the Thai production for the oil and gas industry Products / Services: Type of Business Activities • Import and Export • Design and Manufacturing • Sales and Marketing • Engineering and Metal Fabrication • Engineering Consulting Product Lines • Electrical Generating Sets • Lighting Equipment and Accessories for film and television • Acoustic enclosures and noise reduction equipment i.e. exhaust mufflers • ndustrial exhaust silencers • Generator testing load banks
RLC Co., Ltd 73/6 Rumrudee Soi 2, Ploenchit Road, Lumpinee, Pathumwan Phone : +66 2 650 9018 Website: www.rlc-asia.com Email : firstname.lastname@example.org Representatives: Mr Markus Wehrhahn Mr Richard Jackson Ms Watsharaawee Wutthimaythissuwan
Representatives: Mr Peter David Wisken - General Manager Ms Wilaiphan Saengdee - Company Director Background: Viking Generators Pty Ltd was established 1986 in Sydney, Australia as a generating set service company. From their Australian manufacturing base Viking supplied power generation and support equipment in Australia and the Asia Pacific region for more than 20 years. Plans were commenced in 2006 to move the manufacturing and main operations to Thailand.
Background: RLC was recently established to address the needs of the growing number of companies looking for a customized and personal approach to recruitment. The experienced Management Team of RLC bring with them collectively many years of local and regional recruitment know-how gained in the local Thailand market and in SEA. RLC offers recruitment services in the following sectors; Heavy Industry, Light Industry, Life Sciences and Services. The core of the business caters to mid-range level professionals to senior and executive management appointments. AustChamThailand Advance
NEW MEMBERS and members’ changes Products / Services: RLC offers boutique recruitment solutions which address the unique differences in the various industrial sectors, thus enhancing the quality of delivery for each client. RLC is unique in the sense that it caters to fulfilling client’s needs in both Executive Search Services, where confidential searches are undertaken to pro-actively pinpoint and target the right candidates but also offers Standard Recruitment Services where a comprehensive approach to targeting the right pool of candidates is undertaken through the use of various media. Langdon Nicholas, Mr Level 17 Alma Link Building No. 25 Chidlom, Ploenchit Rd. Lumpini, Patumwan, Bangkok 10330 Change of Representative
berly-Clark Thailand Limited. • Ms Maxine Driscoll, Head of School is a new representative of Traidhos Three Generation Community for Learning. • Ms Nisara Khumphong, Public Relations Manager is a new representative of Centara Grand & Bangkok Convention Centre at CentralWorld. • Mr Michael Berger, Business Development Manager is a new representative of Bangkok Base. • Ms. Siyaphas Chantachairoj, Director, Corporate Marketing & Residential Customer Development is a new representative of Hemaraj Land and Development Public Co., Ltd. • Mr Brendan Daly, General Manager is a new representative of Amari Orchid Pattaya. • Mr Brenton Mauriello, CEO is a new representative of dwp. Change of Company Address
• Mr Jorge Monje, General Manager is a new representative of The Metropolitan. • Mr Scott Blume, CEO is a new representative of Wotif Group. • Mr James Robert Wilson, General Manager is a new representative of Dusit Thani Bangkok. • Ms Ratree Skuntantimeta, Managing Director is a new representative of Kim-
Veritas Enterprises Ltd. 213/2 Asoke Towers Building (3rd Floor) Sukhumvit 21 Road (Asoke) Klongtoey Nua, Wattana, Bangkok 10110 Tel: +6681 844 7015 St Andrew International School 7 Sukhumvit Soi 107 bearing 10260
austcham member offers
Dream Hotel Bangkok Special Dream offer only for AUSTCHAM members Ten per cent off bar prices. Best available internet rates for all rooms. One free room upgrade. 15 per cent discount on a la carte meals and beverages. Terms and Conditions: • Rooms must be booked directly with the hotel in advance and confirmation is subject to availability • Room upgrade is subject to availability • Proof of AustCham membership is required • Cannot be combined with other promotions • Food and beverage discount Offer until: 30 September 2013 Call: + 66 2254 8500
is proud to introduce additional Corporate Sponsors for 2013 Gold Sponsors PTT Exploration and Production Public Company Limited PTTEP is a national petroleum exploration and production company dedicated to providing a sustainable petroleum supply to Thailand and the countries they operate as well as to bring in foreign exchange earnings to their country. A top-ten publicly-listed company in the Stock Exchange of Thailand, PTTEP operates more than 40 projects around the world and has a workforce of 4,000. Since 16 June, 2011, PTTEP has become a participant of the UN Global compact, to strengthen their commitment to its ten principles related to 4 core areas: human rights, labour, environment and anti-corruption, which is in compliance with their good Corporate Governance and Code of Business Conduct. The Beaumont Partnership The Beaumont Partnership is a design studio with a focus on its people and their collective talents and creativity. It is internationally recognised in three core areas of client and industry service - architecture, interior design and landscape design. Having been operating successfully in Thailand for 23 years The Partners believe it is time to give back to the country which has supported them and provided their company with so many fulfilling opportunities. The Beaumont Partnership Foundation was established five years ago to serve needy rural communities and offer a high standard of education to ordinary children free of charge, aimed at maximising their potential and helping them be the very best they can be. Its ambitious flagship project – the Ruam Pattana school in Chaiyaphum Province is now moving from concept to reality. School buildings are being finished and preparations are being made for the first student intake. The new school will not just transform the lives of its students but benefit the entire surrounding community.
From the Chamber Office
Message from the Executive Director
Calendar of Events
Wednesday 6 March Bangkok Sundowners
ongratulations to the AustCham Board of Directors for 2013-14. At the time of writing I don’t really know who that will be, but what is certain is that there will be some significant change. The most significant, of course, will be at the top. Current President John Anderson has served the maximum period of six years on the Board, including the last two years as President. He was, therefore, ineligible to stand again. During his time on the Board John has done much for AustCham. Most of all, however, I would like to publically thank him for his leadership. There are of course many styles of leadership – and even more people who believe they are leaders. But John is the real deal. I have benefited from his leadership in that it has enabled the Chamber to embark on important new initiatives. It has also contributed substantially to my own professional development. John has played a strong and appropriate role of Chairman of the Board, not micro-managing but setting the tone and direction of the Chamber and keeping across enough of the detail to make sure we are on-track. He’s given us the space to develop the capability within the AustCham office. This is crucially important for the Chamber’s longer-term future. To reach its full potential the Chamber must be an institution in its own right, not reliant on any particularly individual. On occasions John has also given me a kick up the proverbial when I’ve needed – or deserved – it. A particularly admirable aspect of John’s leadership has been his selflessness. A selflessness that has come at the expense of time with his family, and criticism and pressure that comes along with making decisions. Perhaps most importantly, John took on the role of AustCham President not because of any personal agenda – or any desire to ‘lift his profile’ (as I too often hear as being a motivation for being involved in the Chamber) – but because he believed in what the Chamber stood for. He saw its potential to contribute and ‘make a difference’. John saw the Chamber as an important institution that represents Australia and Australians. He believed the Chamber could be a force that supports and promotes business – particularly Australian business – in Thailand, and to
18:30-21:30 Venue: Grand Hyatt Erawan Bangkok Corporate Sponsor: Meinhardt Community Service Sponsor: The Beaumont Partnership Foundation Friday 8 March Luncheon Meeting: Global Market Update
12:00-14:00 Venue: Oriental Residence Bangkok Thursday 14 March St Paddy’s Day Networking Event
18.30 – 21:00 Venue: JW Marriott Hotel Saturday 16 March Voluntary English Teaching
an extent Thai business in Australia. He clearly saw the bigger picture. He was a volunteer in the true sense of the word. AustCham is of course a member based organisation. It only exists because of the financial contributions of members. There is no other funding source. Consequently, we work hard to maximise the tangible returns from membership. But AustCham also delivers a range of intangibles. Intangibles such as promoting Australia and Australia-Thai relations, and being a business community focal point in Thailand. In important respects it is these intangibles that make us more than just a marketing and facilitation organisation. It is where the greatest opportunities lie for members to contribute.
8:00-16:00 Venue: Baan Khao Huay Mahad School, Rayong For more information please contact email@example.com Friday 29 March Phuket Sundowners
Thank you to February sponsors:
I don’t want to get too ‘John F. Kennedy’, but I think it’s always worthwhile if members ask the question every now again of “what can I contribute to the Chamber?” as well as “what is the Chamber doing for me?”.
Mark Carroll Executive Director, AustCham Thailand www.austchamthailand.com
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