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Coalition Pledges to Back Business Events Tourism

Coalition Pledges to Back Business Events Tourism
July 29, 2010

A Coalition Government has pledged that it will commit $28 million in new money for initiatives to reinvigorate Australia's business events tourism.

In a statement, Shadow Ciobo MP, Shadow Minister for Tourism, the Arts, Youth and Sport, explains that "the Coalition understands that tourism is a vital part of the Australian economy, employing nearly 500,000 people, accounting for $92 billion in economic activity and generating $24 billion in export earnings.

"But our share of global tourism has fallen and our international competitiveness has slipped. The Coalition aims to reverse that trend and boost the yield earned by Australiaâs tourism operators.

"The Coalition also recognises business events travellers are among the most lucrative and produce the highest yield of any travellers for tourism operators. The business events industry currently generates around $17.6 billion a year to the economy and employs more than 116,000 people.

"With this in mind the Coalition will provide an extra $28 million to boost business events tourism and bring our business events marketing capacity in line with our international competitors.

"This will include a new industry partnership Business Events Bid and Boost Fund, with a $17.5 million injection from the Commonwealth to provide the business events sector with significant money to support bids for key international conferences and boost delegates attending conferences.

"This addresses the need to not only attract more international conferences, but also to grow the number of delegates attending conferences to maximise the return on investment.

"The Coalition will also provide an additional $10.5 million for Tourism Australia to boost marketing of Business Events Australia, representing an increase of around 50% of the current funding.

"This significant investment will be delivered over four years."

Ciobo's statement claims that the Rudd/Gillard Government cut funding for Business Events Australia by more than 10% on the eve of the global financial crisis, adding that "a Coalition government will focus departments and agencies of the Australian Government, such as the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade, on delivering leads for potential international conferences Australia could host."

The Coalition will be releasing further details of our Real Action Plan for Tourism throughout the election campaign.

Image: Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Centre.

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