In our last issue, I wrote about the continuing good fortunes being
encountered by those of us who, on the back of strong demand and steadily
increasing volumes of boats being sold in Australia, make our livings
out of the marine industry. I also pondered the question of whether
or not facilities and services for boat owners and other waterway
users are keeping pace with the growth of the sector, and who – be
it government, industry or the boating community – will
fund future development of facilities. I also invited readers to e-mail
me with their comments.
Well, the mail server at Brighton
nearly melted down. Not since Ed (our Managing Editor, Chris Beattie)
overloaded the system when he “struck gold” whilst downloading material he found
on the net researching a story about Scandinavian supermodels who
ride Harley-Davidsons, have we seen so much demand on our e-business
Clearly, many readers share my concerns,
as I received hundreds of e-mails from all around the country sharing
stories of over-demand and under-supply on boat ramps, slipways,
repair facilities, marina berths, car parks and fuel bowsers. Everyone,
it seemed, wanted to know how issues such as licencing and regulation,
environmental and natural resource management, waterfront land use,
crown leases, population growth and “the naïve and dangerous agendas of some well-known,
noisy, rat-bag, interest groups” will impact on this and future
generations’ access to and enjoyment of our unique maritime
Over coming issues, we will focus
attention on this contentious issue and highlight some sensational
examples that should give all of us some hope. From the small, cheap
and easy solutions at a local level, we have seen exciting developments
such as the wholesale re-development of the entire Port Adelaide
foreshore and similar projects on vast tracts of land south of Perth.
Everyone at Club Marine is committed
to helping the boating community be heard by government at all levels
on this important issue. We will continue to push our agenda of
promoting a safe, accessible and enjoyable boating life-style for all Australians.
The coming boat show season also
gives cause for excitement as manufacturers, importers and retailers
prepare to bring new products to market. And Club Marine will be
intimately involved in the process this year, as we have joined
forces with the Australian Marine Industry Federation to present
the 2006 Australian Marine Awards. The awards will be presented
at a 500-guest, black-tie gala ceremony on the Gold Coast in May
as part of the Sanctuary Cove International Boat Show.
As Australia’s largest provider of insurance for pleasure craft,
AMIF saw us as an obvious partner to support the awards, and our own
Ed has been invited to join the judging panel. We wish all entrants
well and commend every one of them to you when you are next looking
to make a purchase. When the awards are announced, I’d urge
you to take note of the winners and finalists in the relevant categories.
They will have gone through an arduous testing process and will be
truly representative of the best the market has to offer.
The Sanctuary Cove show is one of
the highlights of the calendar for anyone who loves boats. It heralds
the start of the boat show season in Australia and a busy schedule
of boat show commitments for Club Marine this year. There would
hardly be a boat show on the national calendar at which you will
not find Club Marine, supporting both the industry as a major sponsor
and the hordes of potential buyers looking to arrange or discuss
their insurance needs. Take a look at our website at www.clubmarine.com.au
or www.boatshows.com.au for details of boat shows in your state
over coming months.
And when you visit your local show, please make a point of dropping
by to say hello. My team and I appreciate your feedback and we
always have something interesting going on at our stand.
Hope to see you at a boat show or
out on the water.
Publisher and CEO
Club Marine Limited