The following article was written by Jim Gainsford and originally published Wednesday September 21 2016 by The St George & Sutherland Shire Leader. The following text has been captured using computer software and may not be 100% accurate. You can download a high resolution scan of the original publication HERE.
THE new St George Business Chamber was officially launched last week with hopes of it becoming one of the biggest chambers of commerce in NSW. The new entity was created at the annual general meeting of the Hurstville Chamber of Commerce, held at the Hurstville Civic Centre. Hurstville Chamber of Commerce president Allan Zreik formally moved the chamber adopt the new name of St George Business Chamber. Mr Zreik said the amalgamation of Hurstville and Kogarah sees their reach extended. "We have opened dialogue with the Kogarah chamber to rebrand our two chambers and merge into the one;' he said. "What this means is that our chamber will be one of the biggest in NSW:' The newly formed chamber will be supported with annual funding of $30,000, from Georges River Council for the next five years. Mr Zreik was elected as president of the new St George Business Chamber, Carlos Zeidan as vice-president and Tony Baddour as treasurer and secretary. The meeting adopted a new constitution and voted to transfer all the funds of the Hurstville Chamber of Commerce to the St George Business Chamber. The proposed boundaries of the new chamber are Hurstville, Kogarah, Beverly Hills, Lugarno, Kingsgrove, Carlton and South Hurstville. "Tracing our proud heritage back to 1922 as the Hurstville Chamber of Commerce, our aim is to help businesses maximise their potential in the Hurstville area and to be the voice of small business, standing up to government and the decision-makers when business interests are neglected;' Mr Zreik said. "It's important for the business community to succeed because prosperity creates new jobs, social wealth, and a better community in which to live:' It has been a big year for the Hurstville chamber. The chamber is in its best financial position since 1980, with membership up 150 per cent. It has held workshops on small business compliance, lobbied the council on parking and opened its new offices in the Hurstville Civic Centre and won best local chamber of commerce for the South Eastern Sydney Business Awards.