QME 2010 well timed

Already more than 50% of the floor space for the event has been contracted, with more than 200 confirmed exhibitors, according to Soren Norgaard, exhibition manager with QME organiser Reed Exhibitions. “The event is doing extremely well, even this far out,” Norgaard said. “We are tracking very well, compared with where we were with QME 2008 – and that was a record show in terms of exhibitor numbers and visitors.“We are getting plenty of interest from local suppliers in particular – along with comments that they can see a definite pickup in activity and order levels.”Last year more than 500 exhibitors and over 10,000 visitors were attracted to the event which covers mining and related industries, including construction, building, agriculture and transport. Greg Murphy, managing director of Mackay supplier Best Tractor Parts, said the timing of QME in July 2010 was likely to be ideal.“Like most companies servicing the mining sector, the last couple of years have been fairly troubled with many new projects being shelved and the demand for machinery and equipment dropping off quite dramatically,” Murphy said. “While we’ve seen an increase in activity for our spare parts business, with mines keen to keep existing equipment operating efficiently, our hire business has dropped off significantly over the past 18 months or so. “But right now, we can now see a higher degree of confidence coming back in the mining sector and I think next year’s QME will prove to be ideal timing.”Another Mackay-based business with a similar view is NQ Cranes, which designs and manufactures overhead travelling cranes, crane rail systems and jib cranes for industry throughout the state.“The mining and resources sector makes up approximately 55 per cent of our revenue, so it’s a very important element of our business – and like all businesses the global financial crisis has had a significant impact,” Michael McGrath, Queensland sales manager for NQ Cranes, said.“Over the past 12 months, we’ve seen little capital expenditure in the mining sector – which has impacted on our new cranes sales.“However the mines have maintained maintenance budgets and, in fact, we’ve seen an increase in turnover of 35 per cent, due to the amount of maintenance and repair work on existing crane systems.”McGrath pointed to the job section in the local paper.“Two months ago, it was carrying two pages of jobs advertisements; this week there are 12 pages covering service-related vacancies in the mines,” he said. “So we see next year’s QME coming at just the right time.”

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