Annual General Meeting

Date posted: September 7, 2009

I would like to welcome our members and guests. Thank you all for coming to the Chamber’ 9th Annual General Meeting.

I hereby table the following report.

In the past 12 months, the Chamber of Commerce and Industry Australia Philippines Inc (CCIAP) has focussed on 3 key areas to better serve our members and to meet our organisation’ objectives. The 3 key areas were:

  • Teamwork
  • Collaboration
  • Engagement


I am very fortunate to work with an Executive Management Team that values teamwork, diversity and commitment. The smooth running of the Chamber is not possible without your input and hard work albeit on a voluntary capacity.

Because of teamwork the Executive Management Team has successfully accomplished significant tasks for the Chamber in the last 12 months. These are as follows:

  • CCIAP 2008-2010 Business Plan was developed;
  • New look website was launched;
  • Monthly business networking events were organised;
  • Members care strategy was developed;
  • Chamber’s change of name from the Australian Filipino Chamber of Commerce Qld Inc to the Chamber of Commerce and Industry Australia Philippines was accomplished to reflect market demands and optimise opportunities;
  • Provided a sound governance structure to meet relevant legislation and protocols.


In the past 12 months, the Chamber maintained its affiliation with the Chamber of Commerce and Industry Queensland (CCIQ). CCIAP continues to represent its members and has voiced issues and concerns that matters by raising them through CCIQ.

CCIAP reaps benefits from its affiliation with CCIQ as CCIAP has access to affordable insurance cost and CCIAP members have access to:

  • 96 local chambers in Queensland, various interstate and international chambers of commerce;
  • regular business updates;
  • free/low cost business seminars (e.g. “Surviving Tough Times” due to GFC).

CCIAP’s Philippine Office is a courtesy of one of our members based in the Philippines, the Brisbane Technologies. This Office provides support for our members in Australia who are travelling to the Philippines for business. Mr Dennis Hickman, the Chamber’s (Volunteer) International Director and the owner of the Brisbane Technologies has been assisting our members with local contact and network opportunities.

CCIAP maintains its affiliation with ANZCHAM (Australia New Zealand Chamber of Commerce) Philippines and continues to collaborate with its several initiatives. CCIAP has a seat at ANZCHAM’s International Trade Committee. Mr Oscar Torralba, a CCIAP member based in the Philippines, represents our Chamber in the Committee.

CCIAP maintains its Sister Chamber relationship with the Davao Chamber of Commerce and Industry (DCCI) for continuing collaboration and engagement. On 30 September, CCIAP has hosted a dinner for DCCI delegates and delegates from the Mindanao Province Economic Development Office.


CCIAP regularly engages with the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT) at their Brisbane Office. CCIAP in conjunction with DFAT has facilitated a meeting between Ambassador Rod Smith, the incumbent Australian Ambassador to the Philippines, and CCIAP members on 20 July 2009 at DFAT’s Brisbane Office. Ambassador Smith briefed members with the economic and trade trends between Australia and the Philippines. Ambassador Smith also provided members with the progress report on the Australia Philippines Free Trade Agreement and the Agreement’s implications to businesses and trade between the two countries.

CCIAP supports Trade Queensland (TQ) by being involved in trade visits and missions. I would like to add here that CCIAP has made several contacts with TQ to meet Ms Boyle, the new Queensland Government Representative to Southeast Asia. So far, the meeting is yet to take place. I will follow this up with TQ as soon as possible.

CCIAP is an active member of the Brisbane Lord Mayor Multicultural Business Round Table. Several members have attended the Annual Lord Mayor’s Multicultural Business Dinner Ball held on 29 May 2009. The Ball was a chance for our members to network with local businesses and a chance to lend support to the Round Table’s Scholarship program. The Program aims at assisting migrants with their training and development to become successful in starting and running a business in Australia. Being a member of the Round Table enables CCIAP members to have access to free/low cost seminars (e.g. Financial Seminar for Women Entrepreneurs).

At CCIAP, one of our key aims is to maximise member engagement and networking opportunities. We have seen values in this so we are committed in continuing the successful programs and initiatives since the Chamber’s establishment. We are also committed in improving these. In the past 12 months we have facilitated and promoted:

2008-09 First Mondays Business Networking

  • CCIAP’s Monthly business networking (held on the ‘First Mondays’ of the month);
  • International trade and business visits;
  • “Word of mouth” referrals.
October Visit to Charlton Brown, one of the leading training providers for care andcommunity services
November Visit to the new Filipino eatery in Fortitude Valley
December Chamber Christmas Party
February Information session by Vantage Performance on how to improve business performance and execute corporate turnarounds
March Mike O’Hagan (MiniMovers) shares his secrets to business success
April Live, Work and Study in Australia by Wayne Harrison
May Information Session on ‘Fair Work Bill’ by Anita Moss (Haycroft Workplace Solutions)
June “Creating value through customisation” by Paul Gaske (Market Australia)
July Educational Series on Market Research by Connie da Cunha
August Queensland and Australia’s Golden Guru Program by Ernie Peralta

2008-09 International trade and business visits

On 30 September 2008, CCIAP received delegates from Davao City Chamber of Commerce and Industry; Mindanao Economic Development; Mindanao Technical Vocational Education and Training Association.

On 6 August 2009, CCIAP received delegates from Quezon City Government and Quezon City business groups.


Indeed, 2008-2009 has been a very busy year full of activities for the Chamber despite the ‘global financial crisis’. These activities are designed to benefit our members and to meet the Chamber’s strategic objectives. The past year’s performance is not possible without the contribution of our Executive Team and our members. The Chamber’s strength remains the productive teamwork of our Executive Team and our members. With your commitment and dedication, the Chamber will continue to collaborate with our key partners and with relevant agencies to maximise opportunities for the Chamber. With your support, the Chamber will continue to pursue initiatives and activities to advance the Chamber’s interest (for members benefits) and to meet its organisational objectives.

In closing, I would like to thank the outgoing Executive Team members and their family for their contribution, commitment and dedication. I would also like to thank you, our members and supporters for your continuing support and encouragement. Together, as a team, we will continue to work in achieving the Chamber’s vision, purpose and objectives from here and in the years to come. Attached are some images of ‘CCIAP in action’ in the past 12 months.

Connie da Cunha
President 2008-09

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