General News

Buy Local policy released

SMALL and regional businesses will find it easier to sell goods and services under a new policy framework outlined by the Works and Services Minister Rob Johnson. The Buy Local policy is an Australian first, with WA the only state to use government buying to assist small business and regional economies. The policy will for the first time impose on government agencies a minimum local purchasing target. Government department heads will be required to source at least 70 per cent of their goods and services locally when practical.

Lost working days drop

THERE were 61,200 working days lost due to industrial disputes in Australia in June – a drop of 7 per cent on the previous month, according to the Australian Bureau of Statistics. For the third consecutive month, the education, health and community services group of industries accounted for the largest proportion of working days lost with 40 per cent of total days lost. About 6 per cent of working days lost were in WA. More than 50 per cent of the 752 disputes in the year ending June 30 were over managerial policy while about 114 disputes were over physical working conditions.

Manufacturing arm sold

ERG Group’s telecommunications manufacturing businesses in Perth and Belgium have been acquired by Alabama-based SCI Systems, providers of manufacturing and supply chain services. The purchase, estimated at about $75 million, will take effect from October when all of ERG’s manufacturing staff will transfer to SCI. SCI, which operates in 39 locations across 17 countries, will assume ERG’s contract to manufacture Nokia Networks GSM base stations at the Perth facility, as well as assuming the manufacturing contract between ERG’s telecommunications and transit business. ERG CEO Peter Fogarty said the acquisition would considerably strengthen ERG’s ability to meet worldwide demand and allow it to focus on its core business – furthering the development of smart card technology.

Palandri appointments

ONE million cases of sales is the target of new general manager (marketing and sales) of Palandri Wines Gordon Grant. The former employee of Kingston Estate will be responsible for branding, marketing and sales domestically and internationally. Kingston Estate lost another executive, Jim Smith, who has been appointed national sales manager of Palandri. Anthony Wilkes has been promoted to general manager production and supply, Bill Cutler has been appointed general manager Palandri Capital and Mark Norton will be in charge of all capital raising activities from his new office in Sydney.

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