A new agreement to strengthen the relationship between the City of Fremantle and the local business community has been adopted by Fremantle Council.
The City of Fremantle has had a Memorandum of Understanding in place with the Fremantle Chamber of Commerce since 2009.
The new agreement adopted by the council last night commits the City to ongoing collaboration and engagement with the Chamber, including jointly advocating for major infrastructure projects and event funding through the state government’s Future Fremantle Committee.
It also identifies opportunities for joint projects and confirms a funding commitment in line with the City’s current budget provisions.
Fremantle Deputy Mayor Andrew Sullivan said the new MOU would lead to enhanced collaboration on a range of economic opportunities to meet the City’s and the Chamber’s shared vision for Fremantle.
“The primary motivation for the City investing in the renewal of Walyalup Koort was to resuscitate the stagnated local economy by bringing more workers and residents into the city centre and therefore more customers for local businesses,” Cr Sullivan said.
“That plan is clearly working, but there are still challenges ahead as we work to recover from the impacts of COVID-19 and grapple with the planned relocation of container shipping from Fremantle to the Outer Harbour.
“There are also many emerging opportunities to diversify Fremantle’s economy, such as expanding our creative industries and establishing Fremantle as the administrative base for the Western Trade Coast.
“The Chamber is the most well established and broadly-based representative organisation for the business community in Fremantle and enjoys the strong support of the business community.
“It’s now more important than ever for the City and the Chamber to work together to support local businesses and promote continued growth in Fremantle’s local economy.”
Fremantle Chamber of Commerce Chief Executive Officer Danicia Quinlan said the Chamber was the largest and most proactive voice for business in the region.
“The Chamber of Commerce was established in 1873 to promote economic growth and represent the interests of ‘shippers, merchants and traders’ across Fremantle,” Ms Quinlan said.
“We have a membership base of over 320 organisations – large and small – that employ some 5000 individuals, and we facilitate four industry sector committees of our members.
“Over the past few years we’ve worked effectively alongside our stakeholders, including the City of Fremantle, to influence significant change in our region. It’s our desire that this work continue positively into the future.
“We’re really pleased that through this revision to our initial Memorandum of Understanding with the City of Fremantle we are formally recognised as a valued partner and contributor to the region.
“We look forward to enhanced collaboration on a range of economic opportunities and strategies, working together to seek out further opportunities and advocating for the future of Fremantle, major projects and positive planning and development outcomes.”
The new MOU commits the City and Chamber to regular meetings to discuss the local economic and business conditions, and ensures the Chamber is invited to participate in advisory committees and working groups established by the City.
The funding agreement within the MOU reaffirms the City’s ongoing support for the Small Business Capacity Building Program, sponsorship of the Fremantle Business Awards and annual corporate membership of the Chamber.