LOCAL manufacturers and businesses will benefit with the launch of a new procurement platform from Namoi Unlimited.
The platform, VendorPanel, will allow each of the councils in Namoi Unlimited to use geolocation data to find suppliers within five kilometres and up to 250km of a postcode from July.
The idea is to support local and regional businesses where possible in major infrastructure projects, Namoi Unlimited chair and Gunnedah Shire Council mayor Jamie Chaffey said.
"Our communities are dealing with a massive change and transformation, years of extreme drought which continues in parts of the region impacting production, water security and ultimately jobs and population in our communities," he said.
"In parts of the Namoi, there were devastating fires and flooding at the beginning of 2020 and now COVID-19.
"How our communities are able to connect with each other, work together and respond is critical to our future." Namoi Unlimited had its monthly meeting on Tuesday in Bingara, bringing together Walcha, Tamworth, Liverpool Plains, Gunnedah and Gwydir councils.
Member for New England Barnaby Joyce and Member for Parkes Mark Coulton also attended, which Mr Chaffey said demonstrates Namoi Unlimited's willingness to work with all levels of government and push priority projects.
"We talked to Mark and Barnaby about the opportunities in the next iteration of the Namoi Protein Supply Chain project, and how we are working closely with the NSW Government to realise our vision of a strong agricultural sector around protein and processing, and to create jobs," he said.
"Councils are businesses in our communities and as businesses we want to support our local and regional economy and get the best value for our ratepayer."
Mr Chaffey and Tamworth mayor Col Murray were re-elected as chair and deputy chair.