BIC conference success

By: Amie Hickland

The Australian bus industry gained many insights from their Asian counterparts at the conference

BIC conference success
Big Arvo Out bus auction winners from left Giorgio Zino (Iveco), Anne Shepperson (Shepperson Transport), auctioneer Tony Hyman, Lloyd Shepperson and Steve Heanes (Iveco)

The Australian bus industry was given insight into one of the most successful public transport systems in the world recently with the Bus Industry Confederation (BIC) 2015 National Conference.

The four day conference was held in Singapore, at Grand Copthorne Waterfront Hotel, with a theme of ‘moving people – connecting neighbourhoods,’ and attracted about 450 delegates in total.

Some of the key speakers at the event included Australian high commissioner in Singapore Philip Green, Singapore Land Transit Authority director policy Dr Joe Fai Poon and Canadian Urban Transit Association Michael Roschlau.

BIC chair Wayne Patch welcomed delegates to the conference, citing the impact the BIC has made on the Federal Government in the last ten years with the new appointment of minister for cities Jamie Briggs.

"Singapore is internationally regarded for its urban and land use planning of which public transport policy is a critical success factor in making this city functional, liveable and vibrant," he says.

"What better time also for us to be here, so shortly after our prime minister has announced for the first time a ministry for cities and the built environment?

"For the first time we have a minister responsible for cities… it is a great outcome for Australia and our nation."

BIC executive director Michael Apps is pleased with how the conference went and encouraged Australian operators and suppliers to continue looking to expand offshore toward countries such as Singapore.

"The opportunities are out there to grow our economy and make Australia strong."

He says the speakers worked hard to make the Asian environment relatable to the Australian environment.

"I hope you appreciate the conference sessions because the people who contribute spend a lot of time thinking about how to make the sessions relevant."

The BIC National Awards were also presented with 2015 Outstanding Contribution being awarded top Garry Baxter of Baxter’s Bus Lines, New South Wales.

Delegates also attended a variety of social events including the Big Arvo Out which the Iveco-sponsored bus was auctioned off for $360,000.

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