August Newsletter

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Message from the Director Regional Development

Attracting High Value Jobs
Over the past 12 months, employment growth has increased by 6.8% on the Sunshine Coast, compared to 3.5% for Queensland. These are very positive headline figures with 10,900 new jobs created with an unemployment rate remaining at a relatively low 4.9%. However, an ongoing challenge for the Coast is how to attract more high paying and full-time jobs as we continue to lag behind the State average in median salary.

RDA Sunshine Coast is one of the founding project partners of #SCRIPT, a collaboration of local entrepreneurs, businesses, government stakeholders and community members with the aim to support job creation, talent attraction and encourage cross section innovation. #SCRIPT is seeking innovative project concepts by August 8 prior to a co-creation workshop scheduled for later next month so get your ideas in.

Rail Upgrade

The Beerburrum to Nambour rail line upgrade is a critical piece of infrastructure for a region that is going to grow from a population of 366,000 to over half a million by 2036. This project will keep traffic off the Bruce Highway which is already constrained and provide commuters with additional train services. Freight services are expected to reach capacity by 2023 – if the project does not proceed this will result in additional traffic on the Bruce Highway.

The Federal Government has committed $390 million to duplicate Queensland's North Coast Rail Line between Beerburrum and Landsborough and build capacity upgrades from Landsborough to Nambour. The Queensland Government also announced funding of $160.8 million in its recent budget – however there is still a shortfall of $170 million. Given its significance to the region, we will be working constructively with the State and Federal Government’s to make sure this project becomes a reality.

Phil Harman
Director Regional Development                                              Regional Development Australia (RDA) Sunshine Coast

Over $3m awarded to Sunshine Coast projects in BBRF
RDA Sunshine Coast has welcomed the Federal Government’s decision to award $3,168,439 to four Coast projects under Round Two of the Building Better Regions Fund (BBRF) Infrastructure Projects stream.
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EOI to deliver ASBAS Digital Solutions program to small businesses

RDA Brisbane is seeking Expressions of Interest from qualified and experienced service providers to help deliver the ASBAS Digital Solutions program to small businesses.

The program delivers low cost, high quality, digital advisory services to small businesses in metropolitan and regional areas across four priority digital capabilities.

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Facilitator EOI for Startup Onramp program
Startup Onramp is a training and mentoring program for first-time startup founders. The program gives new and aspiring founders the skills and guidance they need to launch a globally scalable tech startup.

Companies are invited to submit expressions of interest for two facilitator contractors to deliver this program on the Sunshine Coast.  
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Read the latest SCRIPT newsletter to find out what milestones have been achieved in the last nine months, the outcomes of the R&D Labs, and learn about some of the projects have been funded through SCRIPT to date.
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Committee member profile: Carol Cashman (Chair)
Each month we will profile one of the RDA Sunshine Coast Committee members. Read more to find out what they see as the biggest opportunities on the Coast, why they joined the committee, the most interesting thing about them that we won’t learn from their résumé - and more!

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Quarterly Report to Region (Q2)
The Quarterly Report to Region provides an update on the latest regional trends and key activities and work undertaken by RDA Sunshine Coast. The Apr-Jun Quarterly Report to Region is available on our website now.
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FIAL Food Pathway to UK and European Markets

The UK Grocery Accelerator Program will provide Australian food and beverage exporters with the knowledge, capabilities and connections they need to succeed in the UK/European markets. The Program will be highly customised to individual company needs, taking into account their varying levels of market knowledge and experience.

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Boosting innovation and science
Embracing innovation, technology and science is critical to powering our economy to provide jobs and high living standards for all Australians. The National Innovation and Science Agenda (NISA) sets a focus on science, research and innovation as long-term drivers of economic prosperity, jobs and growth.
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Don't pay for government grant information
Are you looking for a government grant to help fund your business? Don’t get caught out by scams and paying for access to government grant information. Government grant information is available free online — you don’t need to pay for it!
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Business Growth Fund Program
The Business Growth Fund Program, delivered by the Office of Small Business, is a grant program which provides targeted assistance for small and medium businesses that demonstrate high-growth and employment aspirations.

#SCRIPT Advance Regional Innovation Program (ARIP)
The Advance Regional Innovation Program (ARIP) will provide $1 million over 3 years to develop innovation and entrepreneurial activities across the Sunshine Coast region.

Visit our Grants & Funding page for more grants and funding opportunities
Innovation Journey 
An outline of innovation funding and support available through the Australian and Queensland governments to help you develop your innovation and grow your business.
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Free Trade Agreements Information Seminar
Find out how you can take advantage of Australia's Free Trade Agreements (FTAs) with a focus on Korea (KAFTA), Japan (JAEPA), and China (ChAFTA), but also covering the new agreements with Peru (PAFTA) and TPP-11 countries.  
Wednesday 8 August, 9.30AM-12 NOON
QCOSS Skilling Queenslanders for Work - Workshops and Webinars
Discover how to develop a proposal that gives you the best chance of success in a competitive funding environment.
17 August - Thursday 13 September
3rd Australian Universal Design Conference
Universal design is a process of thinking and designing inclusively, whether it is a house, website, product, service, or a learning program. Keynote speakers will cover topics such as the economics of inclusion, future transport, inclusive tourism, and house and home.
4-5 September

How to prepare a winning award / grant submission

How do you prepare the perfect Grant application to win maximum dollar value to inject into your business? Do you know how to prepare and enter the winning Award submission? This workshop will give you the tools and techniques to attain Award and Grant success.

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The JobShow 2018
The JobShow is back in 2018 with jobs, skills and business support. If you are looking for a job or training and skills - or you are a new business, an existing business or thinking about starting your own business, the JobShow Business and StartUp Support services will help you take your business to the next level. 
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7 Sunshine Coast Marathon and Community Running Festival
The 7 Sunshine Coast Marathon and Community Running Festival is one of the most-loved running festivals in Australia. Since its inception the 7 Sunshine Coast Marathon has raised over $1.3 million for charity and community groups.
17-19 August, 2018
Mooloolaba / Alexandra Headland

The JobShow
If you’re looking for a job, a change in career, information on training and up-skilling opportunities or support for your business start-up, then mark Tuesday, September 4 in your calendar for the return of The JobShow!
Tuesday 4 September, 2018

Have your say!

We welcome your feedback about any of our projects or news items featured in our monthly newsletter.

If you have regional news stories or economic development events relevant for the Sunshine Coast community (or even awesome images of this great place we call home that you would like to share!) - please contact us at

Editorial deadline is by the 28th of each month.

Contact us

RDA Sunshine Coast
17 Ocean Street
Maroochydore Q 4558
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Regional Development Australia Sunshine Coast is an Australian Government initiative that works in collaboration with the Queensland Government, Sunshine Coast and Noosa Councils to support economic development within the region.
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