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CAWS President Trevor Oldfield, front centre, and CAWS members and supporters at the launch. CAWS President Trevor Oldfield, front centre, and CAWS members and supporters at the launch. Featured
23 October 2019 Posted by 

REGIONAL CHAMBER ALLIANCE LAUNCHED

CAWS has business as its cause
DI BARTOK
WESTERN SYDNEY business owners are set to have a united voice in urban planning and development following the launch of the Chamber Alliance of Western Sydney (CAWS).

The organisation was launched at Alpha Hotel, Eastern Creek on October 21.
 
CAWS brings together all the chambers of commerce in Western Sydney and marks a turning point in the way small and medium businesses engage with State and Federal Governments on major infrastructure projects and other issues.
 
The formation of the chamber alliance, until now low-key, followed an April 2018 roundtable with Mitchell MP Alex Hawke and then-Federal Infrastructure Minister Paul Fletcher on the opinions of business owners on the Western Sydney City Deal and more specifically rail infrastructure projects in the Greater West.
 
Mr Hawke had called together the chambers in Parramatta, Blacktown, the HIlls and Riverstone for the roundtable discussion.
 
CAWS president Trevor Oldfield said it was the first time small and medium business owners had been asked how infrastructure and urban planning impacted them.
 
“From this small roundtable of 20, we quickly mobilised into formation of a group that brought together all the chambers,” Mr Oldfield said.
 
“We could see there was a distinct opportunity to continue this conversation not only on key infrastructure but potentially on a range of issues affecting Greater Western Sydney.”
 
Mr Oldfield said that there had been earlier informal discussions on chambers forming a united group but the approach of Mr Hawke was the impetus they needed.
 
“Up until now, there had been no one body that represented the needs and views of small to medium-sized businesses in regard to projects affecting us all, so it is long overdue,” he said.
 
CAWS is keen to bring on board retail merchants, as well as the community, to have their say in the future of Western Sydney.
 
“Projects at all levels, local, State and Federal, affect us all and there should be a united voice, not just the interests of the corporate sector,” Mr Oldfield said.
 
While the group came out of the meeting with Hawke and Fletcher, no politician was invited to the launch as the CAWS executive did not want to “make it political”, Mr Oldfield said.
 
Since forming in May 2018, CAWS has met every month and has elected as its executive, Trevor Oldfield as president, Richard Holland vice-president, Eric Tjoeng treasurer and Livia Janovics public officer/secretary.
 
Western Sydney Business Access is the media partner and a high-profile law firm Brydens legal counsel.
 
Mr Oldfield is excited about the future, not only for businesses but residents.
 
Ever-mindful of a wholistic approach to a vibrant Western Sydney, Mr Oldfield said CAWS would engage with the public on infrastructure and development issues, as well as building tourism through regeneration of heritage precincts.
 
“Building up our heritage assets and activating them for tourism will bring in millions of dollars into the area and be of benefit to businesses, creating more jobs,” he said.


editor

Publisher and editor, Michael Walls.
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Western Sydney Business Access (WSBA) covers the business and community issues of the Greater Western Sydney region of Australia. WSBA is the popular media source for connecting with the pulse of the region and tapping into it's vast opportunities and networks.