The Australia Japan Business Council (WA) Inc. teamed up with Linneys’ Pearls to acknowledge the longstanding beneficial relationship that the Japanese community has forged with Broome and the broader Kimberley region.
In the delightful New York style loft showroom that is Linneys’ King Street premises, AJBC Chair Richard Sandover presented guest speaker the Hon. Alannah MacTiernan, Minister for Primary Industry and Regional Development. The Minister addressed the importance of the WA-Japanese partnership particularly its longevity. From the earliest pearl divers arriving in Broome in the late nineteenth century through to today, the Japanese have left an indelible imprint on the community and social fabric of Broome. Minister MacTiernan highlighted the beauty and ‘zen’ ambience of Broome’s Japanese cemetery and noted it has become a feature of any visit to Broome.
The Minister noted that Japanese naval vessels provided security for the Australian transport carriers that left from Albany on the long journey to Turkey and Europe in the early days of WW1. She also pointed out that Japanese imports of Western Australian iron ore did not commence with the Pilbara in the 1960s but rather export of iron ore from Koolan Island for a short period in the 1930s, with a certain BHP holding the first export licence.
On a note of pride and reflection, the Minister informed guests that she now had two Australian Japanese grandchildren, courtesy of her son marrying a Japanese girl. In her additional capacity as Minister for Hydrogen Industry, the Minister’s political responsibilities will continue to ensure that Japan is front and centre in her actions.
The AJBC thanked Justin Linney, CEO of Linneys Pearls for hosting the event. Justin offered an insight into the origins of the Linney family company, and its present role in developing and promoting Australian South Sea Pearls. Linneys provided a $500 door prize which was won by Curtin law student and AJBC intern, Nia Cura.
AJBC thanks were also offered to the Japanese Deputy Consul-General Mr. Naoki Semmyo, Rare Foods Australia and Glenarty Road Winery for the provision of extraordinary hors d’ouvres (including sea farmed abalone) and Howard Park wines from the Burch Family wine company and of course to the many members and followers of the AJBC who attended and enjoyed themselves on the night.