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Working in Tasmania stories

The following stories relate to working in Tasmania

Incat spots an opportunity

Incat has come up with a novel way to deal with a shortage of workers – a spotter's fee. Incat employees are being offered a $1,000 incentive if they can find someone to work at the company. Incat is on the hunt for qualified carpenters, welders, electricians, fabricators and fitters. They need to add another 40 to 60 workers to their staff of 600 to help fulfil all the current contracts. Incat chief executive, Tim Burnell told The Mercury: “We’ve been advertising, we advertised on the mainland – that brings in a few people. We’ve just started to say how we can possibly think outside of the box and come up with other ways where we can encourage people.” Incat, which is based at Derwent Park in Hobart, is the designer and the builder of some of the world’s fastest ocean-going vehicle and passenger ferries.

13 August 2018, Edition 197

New irrigation boss

As Tasmania continues to roll out its comprehensive irrigation infrastructure, a new face has been appointed to lead the charge. It has been announced that Chris Thompson, the former executive director of management consulting firm Macquarie Franklin, has been appointed as the new director of Tasmanian Irrigation (TI). The Minister for Primary Industries and Water, Sarah Courtney said Mr Thompson was well regarded in the Tasmanian farming and agricultural sectors. She added he had: “extensive consulting experience in agribusiness developments, rural water resources management, irrigation systems and dam construction and operation… [his] expertise will further complement the skills within the current Tasmanian Irrigation Board and we look forward to his valuable contribution.” Ms Courtney thanked outgoing director Roger Gill for his “valuable input and considerable service since TI’s inception".

13 August 2018, Edition 197

Tassie stars chasing big prizes

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Tasmanian athletes are in the running for several of world sport's big prizes in coming weeks.

11 July 2018, Edition 196

Hot housing heads north

Tasmania’s property boom continues unabated, with predictions Launceston and the north-west are next in line for strong growth. The Real Estate Institute of Tasmania said Hobart – which is Australia’s best performing capital city property market – is not the only region riding the property wave. REIT president Tony Collidge told ABC News: “We are seeing prices increase in Launceston and the number of properties for sale is starting to decrease, which is a sign of a maturing market. We are seeing the exact thing starting to happen on the north-west coast.” Meantime, Hobart’s property market continues to steam ahead. According to latest figures from Corelogic, March quarter data shows the median profit for properties sold in Hobart was $245,000. That is significantly up on the same period last year, when average profits sat around $180,000.

10 July 2018, Edition 196

The story of our ‘Naked State’

What makes Tasmania unique? That’s the subject of an exciting new campaign called The Naked State, where 200 Tasmanians, selected randomly, were interviewed on the matter. Premier Will Hodgman, who has just launched the campaign, explained: “No one is better placed to shape Tasmania’s brand, or the Tasmanian story, than everyday Tasmanians, which is what this project is all about.” Stage one of the campaign is The Naked State Facebook page, which will upload insights about why people love living here. It will also encourage others to join in the conversation over the next nine weeks.

6 May 2018, Edition 194

Defence excellence on target

The State Government has reiterated its commitment to developing Tasmania as a “defence supply centre of excellence”. It said this has been given a boost with a dedicated Defence Industries Minister added to the Cabinet mix. Tasmania currently has some 30 businesses working in defence - including Elphinstone, Liferaft Systems Australia and Taylor Bros. While defence may be just part of their operation, these companies together generate more than $340 million a year and employ almost 2,000 people. New Defence Industries Minister, Jeremy Rockliff, said: “We are here to help our local companies connect with national and international defence buyers and suppliers in a co-ordinated way.” He added if the Tasmanian industry is to win its per-capita-share of the $195 billion Defence Integrated Program then, “our defence industry would grow to more than $400m per year within the next 10 years.” The Minister also pointed out that the appointment last year of Tasmania’s Defence Advocate, Rear Admiral (Retd) Steve Gilmore, was crucial in “identifying opportunities and advocating for Tasmania in the defence space.”

11 April 2018, Edition 193

Naval partners for Maritime College

The Launceston based Australian Maritime College has been named as the strategic partner of the new $25m Naval Shipbuilding College in Adelaide. The Naval College will be the key provider of manpower and expertise needed for the Federal Government’s $195m defence build, which includes submarines and naval vessels. However, the partnership will also deliver opportunities for students at the Maritime College. University of Tasmania Vice-Chancellor, Professor Rufus Black, welcomed the announcement by Federal Defence Minister, Christopher Pyne, seeing it as a major opportunity for Tasmania. Professor Black said: “There will soon be unprecedented career development opportunities in the maritime sector, particularly in the fields of maritime engineering and logistics, as a result of the Government’s multi-billion dollar naval shipbuilding program.” It is estimated that by 2026 more than 5,200 workers will be needed to fulfil the Government’s defence build.

11 April 2018, Edition 193

‘Tick of health’ for Tasmania’s brand

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The annual health check of Tasmania’s brand has returned a diagnosis of ‘excellent health’.

10 April 2018, Edition 193

Jobless rate on improve

Tasmania recorded an unemployment rate of 5.7 per cent in trend terms in January, its best since September 2011 and the second-best of all States. Australian Bureau of Statistics figures showed the more volatile seasonally adjusted jobless rate had dropped from 6.1 per cent in December to 5.3 per cent, lower than all States except NSW. There were 14,800 unemployed Tasmanians in January. The latest Sensis Business Index released in February had further welcome economic news, reporting that Tasmania's small and medium businesses were the most confident in Australia. The Index showed 73 per cent of small businesses to be confident, with only 13 per cent reporting a negative outlook. Confidence had risen 10 points to 60-plus in the final quarter of 2017. Sensis CEO, John Allan, said: “Tasmania really is leading Australia in terms of business confidence and perception of the economy. We haven’t seen numbers this strong for nearly 10 years. Unsurprisingly, Tassie small businesses’ expectations for the year ahead are among the most positive in Australia for all indicators, with Tassie showing the only positive capital expenditure balance in the country for 2018.”

8 March 2018, Edition 192

Fucoidans pass US cancer test

Seaweed extracts developed in Tasmania have been found by researchers at the University of Texas Health Science Center in Houston to boost the effectiveness of chemotherapy drugs. The extracts, known as fucoidans, are produced by Cambridge-based biotech business Marinova from seaweed varieties found in local waters. The extracts were found to decrease the growth of a human ovarian cancer tumour line by up to 33 per cent and a human cervical cancer tumour line by up to 70 per cent. The researchers also found that fucoidans considerably improved the efficacy of the chemotherapy drug Tamoxifen in treating breast cancer and decreased breast cancer tumour growth by up to an additional 26 per cent. Director of the Women’s Health Integrative Medicine Research Program in Houston, Dr Judith A. Smith, said: “This was the first research program to comprehensively assess the metabolism of fucoidan compounds for possible chemotherapy drug interactions. A ... study is now underway at UTHealth to further assess safety and observe quality of life parameters in human cancer patients.”

8 February 2018, Edition 191

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Facts about Tasmania

Tasmania

Tasmania is the southernmost state of Australia, located at latitude 40° south and longitude 144° east and separated from the continent by Bass Strait. It is a group of 334 islands, with the main island being 315 km (180 miles) from west to east and 286 km (175 miles) north to south.

Tasmania

Tasmanians are resourceful and innovative people, committed to a continually expanding export sector. In 2012–13, international exports from the state totalled $3.04 billion. USA, China, Taiwan, India, Japan and other Asian countries account for the bulk of exports, with goods and services also exported to Europe and many other regions.

Geography

Tasmania is similar in size to the Republic of Ireland or Sri Lanka. The Tasmanian islands have a combined coastline of more than 3,000 km.

Geography

The main island has a land area of 62,409 sq km (24,096 sq miles) and the minor islands, taken together, total only 6 per cent of the main island’s land area. The biggest islands are Flinders (1,374 sq km/539 sq miles), King, Cape Barren, Bruny and Macquarie Islands.

Geography

About 250km (150 miles) separates Tasmania’s main island from continental Australia. The Kent Group of Islands, one of the most northerly parts of the state, is only 55km (34 miles) from the coast of the Australian continent.

Climate

Twice named ‘Best Temperate Island in the World’ by international travel magazine Conde Nast Traveler, Tasmania has a mild, temperate maritime climate, with four distinct seasons.

Climate

In summer (December to February) the average maximum temperature is 21° Celsius (70° Fahrenheit). In winter (June to August) the average maximum is 12° C (52° F) and the average minimum is 4° C (40° F). Snow often falls in the highlands, but is rarely experienced in more settled areas.

Annual Rainfall

Tasmania’s west coast is one of the wettest places in the world, but the eastern part of the State lives in a rain-shadow. Hobart, the second-driest capital city in Australia, receives about half as much rain as Sydney.

Annual Rainfall

Annual rainfall in the west is 2,400 mm (95 inches), but hardy locals insist there is no such thing as bad weather, only inadequate clothing. If you travel 120 km east to Hobart, you experience a much drier average of 626 mm (24 inches) a year.

Population

The 512,875-strong community spreads itself across the land; less urbanised than the population of any other Australian state. Hobart, the capital city, is home to more than 212,000 people.

Capital City

Hobart nestles at the foot of kunanyi / Mount Wellington (1,270 m / 4,000 ft) and overlooks the Derwent Estuary, where pods of dolphins and migrating whales are sometimes seen from nearby beaches. Surrounded by thickly forested rolling hills, the city is home to the state parliament and the main campus of the University of Tasmania.

Capital City

Its historic centre features Georgian and Regency buildings from colonial times. Hobart is home port for coastal fishing boats, Antarctic expeditions and vessels that fish the Southern Ocean.

Land Formation

Mountain ranges in the south-west date back 1,000 million years. Ancient sediments were deeply buried, folded and heated under enormous pressure to form schists and glistening white quartzites.

Land Formation

In the south-west and central highlands, dolerite caps many mountains, including Precipitous Bluff and Tasmania’s highest peak, Mt Ossa (1617 m / 5300 ft). More than 42 per cent of Tasmania is World Heritage Area, national park and marine or forest reserves.

Flora

Vegetation is diverse, from alpine heathlands and tall open eucalypt forests to areas of temperate rainforests and moorlands, known as buttongrass plains. Many plants are unique to Tasmania and the ancestors of some species grew on the ancient super-continent, Gondwana, before it broke up 50 million years ago.

Flora

Unique native conifers include slow-growing Huon pines, with one specimen on Mt Read estimated to be up to 10,000 years old. Lomatia tasmanica, commonly known as King’s holly, is a self-cloning shrub that may well be the oldest living organism on earth. It was discovered in 1937.

Fauna

Tasmania is the last refuge of several mammals that once roamed the Australian continent. It is the only place to see a Tasmanian devil or eastern quoll (native cat) in the wild and is the best place to see the spotted-tailed quoll (tiger cat), all carnivorous marsupials.

Fauna

The eastern bettong and the Tasmanian pademelon, both now extinct on the Australian continent, may also be observed.

Fauna

The Tasmanian tiger, or thylacine, was Australia’s largest surviving carnivorous marsupial and is a modern day mystery. The last documented thylacine died in captivity in 1936 and although the animal is considered extinct, unsubstantiated sightings persist.

History and Heritage

Aboriginal people have lived in Tasmania for about 35,000 years, since well before the last Ice Age. They were isolated from the Australian continent about 12,000 years ago, when the seas rose to flood low coastal plains and form Bass Strait.

History and Heritage

Descendants of the original people are part of modern Tasmania’s predominantly Anglo-Celtic population.

History and Heritage

Tasmania was originally named Van Dieman’s Land by the Dutch explorer Abel Janszoon Tasman in 1642. The island was settled by the British as a penal colony in 1803 and the original name was associated with the convict era. It was changed to Tasmania when convict transportation stopped in 1853.

Economy

A resourceful island culture has generated leading-edge niche industries, from production of high-speed catamaran ferries and marine equipment to lightning-protection technology.

Economy

Tasmanians produce winches and windlasses for some of the world’s biggest ocean-going pleasure craft; large-scale inflatable evacuation systems and provide specialist outfit-accommodation services to the marine industry.

Economy

The Wooden Boat Centre at Shipwrights Point has re-established the skills and traditions of another age and attracts students from around the world.

Economy

Tasmania is a world leader in natural turf systems for major sporting arenas and in areas of mining technology and environmental management. Its aquaculture industry has developed ground-breaking fish-feeding technology and new packaging.

Economy

Tasmanians sell communications equipment to many navies and their world-class fine timber designers and craftsmen take orders internationally for furniture made from distinctive local timber.

Economy

The state is a natural larder with clean air, unpolluted water and rich soils inviting the production of 100 varieties of specialty cheeses, as well as other dairy products, mouth-watering rock lobsters, oysters, scallops and abalone, Atlantic salmon, beef, premium beers, leatherwood honey, mineral waters, fine chocolates, fresh berry fruits, apples and crisp vegetables.

Economy

Tasmania is a producer of award-winning cool-climate wines, beers, ciders and whiskies. Other export products include essential oils such as lavender, pharmaceutical products and premium wool sought after in Europe and Asia. Hobart is a vital gateway to the Antarctic and a centre for Southern Ocean and polar research.

Economy

The industries in Tasmania which made the greatest contribution to the State’s gross product in 2010–11 in volume terms were: Manufacturing (9.4%), Health care and social assistance (8.2%), Financial and insurance services (7.2%), Ownership of dwellings and Agriculture, forestry and fishing (each 7.1%).

Getting to Tasmania

Travel is easy, whether by air from Sydney or Melbourne, or by sea, with daily sailings of the twin ferries Spirit of Tasmania 1 and 2 each way between Melbourne and Devonport throughout the year.

This site has been produced by the Brand Tasmania Council © 2014

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