Home' Convenience and Impulse Retailing : November December 2009 Contents FoRECouRT
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Mr Dimasi's presentation focussed on
the ACCC's role and activities. However,
in response to a question from the
floor, he observed that the fuel industry
could be much more active in informing
Other presenters, such as Grant Stillman,
noted that bringing a well-informed
common voice to political issues can
support market-based decisions, including
self-regulation. "For example, ISS First
Response is an industry-based program
that has the support of governments," he
said. "It was developed by groups in the
industry working together."
It was clear from the concluding
Master of Ceremonies Timothy Hyde guided proceedings with wit and style, and a little
bit of magic; and adventurer and motivational speaker Allana Corbin inspired delegates
with her amazing story. The business program was balanced by the social events –
welcome reception at Mawson’s Place, a ‘wild’ night at the Cascade Brewery, and a
catamaran ride to the conference dinner (and more entertainment) at Peppermint Bay.
At the recent ACAPMA Conference in Hobart,
ACCC Petrol Commissioner Joe Dimasi was
asked to critique the fuel industry and its
representative associations. His view: the
industry has no voice.
Although he was not trying to put us down
-- it was a candid comment intended to help
us do better -- I must say my first reaction
was annoyance rather than surprise.
I was annoyed because only three years
earlier, at a combined APADA and AACS
dinner in Sydney, the former Australian
Government energy minister, Ian Macfarlane,
came to the same conclusion. Mr Macfarlane
used the example of the Pharmacy Guild,
which he believed was effective at gaining
the attention of the public and politicians
alike. He indicated that, unless fuel industry
associations acted in a similar way, we would
have no bearing on public policy.
This year's ACAPMA conference also
heard from Jeff Oughton, former CEO of
the Australian Bankers Association, who
believes that petroleum distribution and
petrol convenience mean more to the
Australian community than just fuel, both
economically and socially. He argued that,
until the industry finds its boarder context,
it will not influence the wider community.
As Jeff put it, 'public perceptions are the
If, in politics, perception is reality, there
is no political capital in supporting the fuel
industry; there is only political kudos in
joining in and kicking industry participants!
We need to change perceptions.
As this year ends and another begins, will
we continue to be the definition of insanity
- doing nothing, then being surprised when
nothing changes? Or, will we have the
purpose to do something different?
If we don't do something different,
there is no way we will be influencing
the main game. According to the current
Australian Government energy minister,
Martin Ferguson, 'clean, adequate, reliable
and affordable energy is fundamental
to Australia's economic prosperity'. This
immense public policy and business
challenge was defined during his Energy
State of the Nation report in March 2008. The
minister also clearly outlined his 'top priority'
as providing the leadership to get policy right
that will deliver 'open, competitive markets
and investment certainty'.
Delegates at the ACAPMA conference
clearly indicated a desire for their association
to work towards achieving the best policies,
and to change community perceptions of
the fuel industry. With this resolve and a
national membership, we will be effective
in this vital role.
But first we need to do our homework.
By understanding the industry's key
relationships and impacts in the workplace,
the marketplace, the environment and the
community, we will be able to align our
messages and priorities with society's
When telling the world about ourselves
and our contribution, these key messages
will be explained in uncomplicated
language based on principles and facts.
This includes answers to the difficult
questions -- the ones that get the media's
Taking our message from the grassroots
to public policy will require talking to our
motoring associations, and governments.
Dialogue of this nature is about agreeing
(and disagreeing) principles, clearly
understanding stakeholders' positions
and building goodwill.
Being well-informed and communicating
effectively with others is the only way
we can ensure the open, competitive
market and investment certainty that is
fundamental to a prosperous future in the
Nic Moulis is the General Manager of the
Australasian Convenience and Petroleum
Marketers Association(ACAPMA). ACAPMA
is an employer association representing
the interest of distributors and retailers in
the Petrol and Convenience industry.
remarks of ACAPMA General Manager,
Nic Moulis, that the messages were
heard. "We may be small but we can be
noticed and make things happen," he
said. "We will be going out to members
for the data we need to inform the
community about our businesses and to
develop policy positions to take to the
regulators, and we will be working with
other like-minded associations.
"In closing, special thanks go to our
principal sponsor OAMPS Insurance
Brokers and our business partners
UNIGAS, Commercial Indemnity
and Berkley Insurance and OAMPS
Continued from page 53
Future Energy …… ACAPMA Conference 2009
By Nic Moulis, General
ACCC extends review of Caltex’s proposed
acquisition of 302 Mobil service station sites
The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission has extended the date for the
announcement of its fndings in relation to Caltex’s proposed acquisition of 302 Mobil
service station sites to 2 December 2009.
Caltex says it has worked closely with the ACCC throughout its review of the proposed
acquisition and will continue to provide information in response to issues/requests
raised by the ACCC. As the ACCC review is still underway, Caltex says it is unable to
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