EXPORTER: John Cole of Coles Engineering with one of the side tipping planter bins ready to go to China.
EXPORTER: John Cole of Coles Engineering with one of the side tipping planter bins ready to go to China. Simon Young BUNCHL

Coals Engineering sends $2m shipment of ag gear to China

LOCAL firm Coles Engineering has this week shipped a container load of agricultural equipment to China in a deal worth up to $2 million.

The initial order was placed in September this year after managing director John Cole was approached by Chinese sugar farming interests to supply sugar planter bins and trailers based on Mr Cole's design.

The landmark two-year deal also included 600-litre water spray tanks, in conjunction with four billet planters supplied by a north Queensland manufacturer.

Coles Engineering will supply another container- load to the country in February 2014.

While this is the first

time Mr Cole has entered into a partnership with China, he hopes it won't be the last.

Mr Cole said now was the time to capitalise on China's growing interest in the sugarcane industry, which was well behind Australia's industry.

"They are probably about 30 or 40 years behind in technology to where we are," he said.

"The growing of it is virtually by hand, which is how our industry was probably 30 or 40 years ago.

"Obviously there is some interest in the sugar industry in Asia.

"We've got a product ready to rock 'n' roll."

He said the deal was proof that China was starting to modernise their industry with technology that our region took for granted.

"I've been there and worked through it as it's grown and mechanised to what it is now," he said.

"This is everyday stuff to us, but they haven't got that technology over there.

"You've got to put a value on what you've got.

"If they had the knowledge and technology they wouldn't be buying stuff over here."

Mr Cole anticipates there will be future business opportunities for his company overseas.

He will travel to China in February next year for further discussions in the hope of securing future partnerships.



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