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Labor and Liberals make tourism funding commitments ahead of South Australian election
With the South Australian election to be held on Saturday 17th March, both Labor and the Liberals have made policy commitments to tourism, with Labor pledging an additional $90 million for the tourism budget and the Liberals committing $60 million to boost training in the tourism and hospitality sectors.
Stressing their success in adding 5,400 industry jobs since 2013, South Australian Tourism Minister Leon Bignell said a re-elected Labor Government would commit to creating more jobs with annual tourism spending to increase $100 million annually by 2020/-21.
Minister Bignell committed to continuing to market South Australia interstate and overseas, attracting even more major events and conventions and establishing a new grant program to support the development of new or improved tourism infrastructure, products and experiences - particularly in the regions.
He explained “Labor’s successful Bid Fund will increase to a total of $40 million over the next four years to attract more major events and conferences to our state. This will include initiatives that encourage visitors and conference delegates to stay even longer in South Australia, before or after their event.
“More than 60,000 South Australians are directly or indirectly employed by the tourism industry and this additional funding will help to see this number grow.
“Our government in the past four years has taken the visitor economy to record levels and these initiatives will ensure we continue on this trajectory for the next four years and beyond.”
The South Australian Liberal’s $60 million commitment to training in tourism and hospitality sectors would see the establishment of an international school of culinary excellence, hospitality and tourism on the site of the old Royal Adelaide Hospital.
The announcement was welcomed by Restaurant and Catering Australia Chief Executive Juliana Payne who stated “the hospitality sector is undoubtedly one of the bright spots of the South Australian economy but the benefits of the sector’s growth can’t be sustained unless there is significant government investment in training local students.
“The announcement of a new international school of culinary excellence, hospitality and tourism is a positive step in attracting younger talent to the industry so that they can develop the kind of skills and experience needed to thrive in a hospitality sector career.”
Images: Plans for the redevelopment of the Royal Adelaide Hospital (top) and South Australian Tourism Minister Leon Bignell (below).
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