Latest News

Back to Latest News back

 

Federal Government slammed for ‘abandoning’ tourism

Federal Government slammed for ‘abandoning’ tourism
June 11, 2014

The Federal Government has been slammed for abandoning pre-election commitments to tourism, with Prime Minister Tony Abbott’s Ministry cutting funding for research of tourism trends, making domestic tourism funding a State responsibility and axing Round 2 of the Tourism Industry Regional Fund last year.

Australian Regional Tourism Network Chair David Sheldon is calling on all regional tourism organisations, industry leaders, associations and operators, to start “hounding” their State and Federal politicians in a last ditch attempt to get the current Government to reverse the decision of walking away from domestic marketing, before the deadline of 30th June.

While acknowledging the Federal Government for having frozen the international passenger movement charges, Sheldon explains that “to walk away from domestic marketing and leave it all in the hands of all States is a recipe for disaster.

“We, in regional Australia are a major contributor economically to this country and need to start a ‘ firm knock’ campaign to show our pollies we mean business.”

Sheldon also questioned Federal and State Governments’ commitment to the targets of doubling overnight tourism expenditure by 2020, noting the Queensland Government’s budget reduction of funds for Tourism and Events Queensland.

He asks “is this just the start of more such decisions and is the Federal Government setting the wrong example to the states at such a time?

“We in regional Australia have been gobsmacked by these decisions, ... it wasn’t that long ago that the previous Tourism Minister was proclaiming it a ‘disgrace’ that Australians had accumulated over 118 million days or over $33 billion in leave entitlements, hence the ‘no leave no life’ campaign.

“Now the Coalition starts sending mixed messages to the industry, on the one hand it says that it wants to back the country’s strength, with tourism recognised as one of the nation’s five ‘super sectors’, yet on the other hand walks away from that strength, firstly with odd decisions around the regional tourism grant program, and now with its pending exit from domestic marketing.

“From the regional perspective this Government should be ramping up domestic marketing to encourage our immediate market to discover ‘what’s in their own backyard.

“If this Government is as serious, as we are in regional Australia in achieving (the) goal of doubling the overnight expenditure, then programs which foster dispersal and encourage Australians to travel here at home via creative campaigns are the answer, not simply passing the baton onto the states.”

In the wake of Austrade officials confirming that they are cutting jobs at Tourism Research Australia, shadow Federal Tourism Minister Anthony Albanese (pictured) criticised the Federal Government for a “complete lack of commitment to an industry that employs more than one million Australians and is critical to regional economies.”

Highlighting the lack of Tourism Minister in the Abbott administration, Albanese added “Mr Abbott pays lip service to an industry that employs almost one million Australians and is critical to the health of regional economies right across the nation.

“Research of tourism trends is critical to ensure our industry is working in step with trends in the industry.

”And domestic tourism promotion is also important given it accounts for 70% of Australia’s $107 billion tourism industry with overnight visitors spending $51.5 billion last year.

“But late last year Mr Abbott ordered Australia’s peak tourism marketing body, Tourism Australia to abandon all domestic tourism marketing activities.

“While Mr Abbott wants the states to handle domestic tourism promotion, it is already clear that cash-strapped state and territory governments are unable to deliver.

“Last week the (Queensland) Government slashed tourism funding by 20% in the Queensland bdget, leaving the state’s tourism sector with nowhere to turn.

“The Coalition Government also axed Round 2 of the Tourism Industry Regional Fund last year despite 450 tourism operators spending up to $5000 each to submit grant applications that included matching private capital, investment now lost.

“Instead of cutting funding, abandoning operators and slashing support for key publications, acknowledge the importance of tourism for the national economy and for more than 929,000 Australians whose jobs depend on tourism.”

5th June 2014 - TOURISM MONIES CUT AS QUEENSLAND BUDGET’S LEISURE FUNDING FOCUSES ON COMMONWEALTH GAMES

27th January 2014 - INDUSTRY LEADERS QUESTION AUSTRALIAN GOVERNMENT’S BACKING FOR TOURISM

21st October 2013 - ATEC WELCOMES ANTHONY ALBANESE’S SHADOW TOURISM ROLE


Asking a small favour
We hope that you value the news that we publish so while you're here can we ask for your support?

The news we publish at www.ausleisure.com.au is independent, credible (we hope) and free for you to access, with no pay walls and no annoying pop-up ads.

However, as an independent publisher, can we ask for you to support us by subscribing to the printed Australasian Leisure Management magazine - if you don't already do so.

Published bi-monthly since 1997, the printed Australasian Leisure Management differs from this website in that it publishes longer, in-depth and analytical features covering aquatics, attractions, entertainment, events, fitness, parks, recreation, sport, tourism and venues management.

Subscriptions cost just $90 a year.

Click here to subscribe.

 

supplier directory

The Complete Guide to Leisure Industry Products & Services.

See the directory see all

IP HUB

Talk To Us For Independent Advice & Specialised Services We're business people, not sales reps IP HUB is one of Australia’s leading advisors on telecoms for both small businesses and…

read more

Marketing / Technology

 
 

Goplay Commercial Playground Equipment

Goplay designs and manufactures specialised playground equipment for indoor play centres, hotels, food chains, clubs and resorts. If our years of experience and dedication have taught us one thing,…

read more

Play

 
 

GreeneDesk

Track. Engage. Retain GreeneDesk is a suite of cloud based software solutions helping health clubs, leisure centres and swim schools to effectively track progression, improve customer engagement and…

read more

Aquatics / Billing / Education / Fitness / Technology

 
 

CERAMIC SOLUTIONS

Established in 1994, Ceramic Solutions has excelled at the supply and installation of swimming pool tiles and equipment for the pool and leisure industry, with a focus on the needs of end-users. …

read more

Aquatics / Design / Surfaces / Venues

 
 

Anti Wave International

Anti Wave International is the original suppliers of top performance swim, aquatic sports, leisure and pool programming equipment. Founded in 1971, Anti Wave International is proud of its…

read more

Aquatics / Play / Sport

 
 

PRIAVA

About Priava's Technology -  Priava is a cloud-based and centralised venue and event management system aimed at venues of all sizes. With its familiar and easy-to-use web interface, the…

read more

Attractions / Billing / Entertainment / Events / Technology

 
 

SWIMPLEX AQUATICS

Swimplex Aquatics are a world-class company dedicated to the commercial pool, waterslide industry. We are Australian market leaders servicing all states Australia wide. Swimplex provide a full…

read more

Aquatics / Attractions / Design / Play / Waterparks

 
 

SLE WORLDWIDE AUSTRALIA PTY LTD

SLE Worldwide Australia is a Managing General Underwriter specialising in insuring risks in the world of Sports, Leisure and Entertainment. Be it relaxing, playing, organising or watching sports,…

read more

Insurance / Venues

 
 
 
 

get listed with our suppliers directory

Get your business noticed in our targeted directory. Viewed by 10,000 industry professionals per week!

list your business