The Chamber of Commerce and Industry Queensland (CCIQ) is an active lobby group for Queensland business. Its Industrial Relations resources are well respected and many a business owner has sworn that one unfair dismissal case avoided more than justifies the annual membership fee of $560 (5-9 employees).
Like all major business lobby groups, with the exception of the Council of Small Business of Australia (COSBOA), CCIQ represents large and small business so the local chambers of commerce have flourished by focusing on the small to medium enterprises who can get swamped in a statewide industry body.
There were rumbles of discontent, then, when CCIQ announced an aggressive program to merge as many of the local chambers under its auspices as possible. A story published in Westender on October 17 got a swift reaction from the publicity team at CCIQ correcting some of the language that we had picked up at the Kenmore meeting that inspired that story.
Since then Westender has spoken to the presidents of four local chambers who are going to become satellites of CCIQ Central, none of whom are concerned that the CCIQ now controls their boundaries and their membership.
The consensus is definitely that the fears of a CCIQ takeover are ‘paranoia’. Let us hope that the founder and long-term CEO of Intel was not correct when he said that he lived by the adage, “Only the paranoid survive.”