Sister City Partners



Sister City Partners works with communities to rebuild and strengthen regional economies.



Regions need to fix their food industries … generate clean energy for the future … and drive innovation right across the economy. That’s what we’re about.


This website tells you about us, and our projects. Here, you can support the rebuilding of regional economies by getting involved.



Food and Food Services Export Eco Food Hub

screen-shot-2016-09-19-at-8-06-57-pmSister City Partners has partnered with Singaporean and Hong Kong-based colleagues to establish an exclusive Australian presence in the Eco Food Hub in the strategically located city of Dongguan. This will open up a pathway into the rapidly growing southern China consumer market for Australian food exporters, manufacturers and retailers.


Dongguan is an industrial city of 7.2 million people, located between Hong Kong and Guangzhou. Its strategic position in the Pearl River Delta provides access to a market of over 60 million people, amongst whom are the most wealthy middle classes in China.


The Eco Food Hub is scheduled to open in April 2017, and we are inviting interested parties to register their interest. Click here to find out more and to register your interest.


QNI Financial Information Forums (Concluded)

Sister City Partners funded and provided a series of free information forums for QN workers and other affected people. These  addressed issues like accessing superannuation through hardship provisions, dealing with lenders, mortgages and insurance, budgeting etc. The Forums assisted over 100 workers and their families to better deal with their financial circumstances.


QNI – Expressions of Interest here

027745-c4577d68-9897-11e5-85ed-f898c5ca3341QNI is one of North Queensland’s largest employers. It has been placed into Voluntary Administration, having recently made redundant 237 workers.


It is too important an industry to not try to find a future for it and its workforce.


WORKERS AND CREDITORS TO HAVE REAL STAKE: A new approach is needed. A community buyback of the Refinery is being considered. This is an opportunity for the workforce to gain a real stake in the enterprise’s future. It’s also a chance for other creditors to have an ongoing say.


ENGAGING WITH ADMINISTRATOR: We’ve engaged with the Administrator and have received strong community feedback already. Workers, creditors and general members of the community have said to us that they know business as usual isn’t going to work.


WHAT YOU CAN DO – EXPRESSION OF INTEREST: To gauge community interest in this, we are seeking preliminary Expressions of Interest. If you are interested in how we can keep QNI in community hands, and keep it operational as a going concern, simply complete the EOI register by clicking: here. Expressions of interest are not binding.


MEDIA STATEMENT: A media statement on this initiative issued 19 January 2016 can be viewed here.


Renewable Energy and Bio-oil Refinery

pyrolysis plantCommEnergy has been set up to deliver regional energy security. The costs of energy are killing local businesses. New approaches are needed to deliver lower costs and more sustainable outcomes. That’s why we have set up CommEnergy, a renewable energy joint venture aimed at creating a vibrant renewable oils industry based on fast pyrolysis technologies.


We have proposed a Fast-track Plan to build 4 pyrolysis plants by the end of 2016, which will:


1. Employ 120 people permanently – the skills match with QNI workers is excellent; and

2. Reduce energy costs to key users across the region (by supplying 28MW of power).


We have invited the Commonwealth Government, the Queensland Government, Townsville City Council and James Cook University to support this by becoming founding power purchasers. That’s how you use local purchasing power to build a stronger region. A copy of the correspondence is available here.


CommBeef for food security

FullSizeRenderWe are building a vertically integrated meat supply chain to deliver paddock-to-palate capability. We’ve successfully integrated an independently operated meat supply chain under our CommBeef community ownership structure. A profile is available here.


We employ over 20 people across the supply chain, and are working closely with all participants to progressively introduce new technologies to drive sustainable land use and enhanced product quality.


iNQ for innovation

image1Regional resilience is premised on cultivating a vibrant, dynamic entrepreneurial sector that finds competitive advantage in technology and innovation. That’s why we’re proud to have played our part in the establishment of iNQ, a regional innovation and entrepreneurialship ecology.


In practical terms, it aims to deliver directly (and indirectly) capital, structural and transactional solutions that support growing business activity in regional Australia. This activity necessarily has an international dimension, as reaching larger markets – particularly in North Asia – through partnerships and collaboration is in many ways a critical precondition for success.


As a not for profit enterprise, it cannot distribute profits to disinterested and far-removed shareholders. Rather, as a lawful necessity, it must reinvest these proceeds into businesses and activities that are single-mindedly focused on building regional economic resilience and social wellbeing. That is our pledge to the community.

Message from the Directors