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Tourism representatives highlight value of the visitor economy to Government
Leaders of Australia’s leading tourism industry organisations have met with Federal Tourism Minister Richard Colbeck in Canberra to discuss the tourism industry’s priorities ahead of the 2016 Federal Election.
The discussions - which involved senior executives representing the Australian Federation of Travel Agents, Tourism and Transport Forum (TTF), the Accommodation Association of Australia, the Australian Regional Tourism Network, the Australian Tourism Export Council, the Business Events Council of Australia, and Tourism Accommodation Australia - canvassed the industry’s proposed reform agenda.
Following the meeting, a joint communiqué highlighted the need for the Federal Government to do the following:
• Continue the freeze of the Passenger Movement Charge (PMC);
• Cut the cost of visas for key and emerging markets such as China and Indonesia and continue to invest in streamlining the visa application process;
• Provide a substantial, game-changing investment in destination marketing to help the industry reach the Tourism 2020 targets; and
• Support new initiatives to develop and increase the workforce of the visitor economy.
The meeting took place just a day after the latest ABS Overseas Arrivals figures confirmed that 7.5 million people travelled to Australia in the 12 months to January 2016 – up 9.3% on the previous year.
Welcoming the growth, TTF Chief Executive Margy Osmond stated “these strong figures are the best evidence that the visitor economy is the sector we should be investing in to support the jobs and economic growth that will sustain our quality of life into the future.
“Chinese visitors are a boon for Australia – up an incredible 30.1%. We’ve passed the historic milestone of one million Chinese visitors and they are spending a record $8.3 billion, making this a very lucrative market for our visitor economy.
“January saw a strong surge of 114,300 Chinese visitors (up 22.6%) ahead of the Chinese New Year celebrations in February – confirming that Australia is a growing attractive destination for this annual celebration of the Chinese calendar.
“And yet with 130 million Chinese anticipated to head overseas this year Australia is attracting less than 1% of the total Chinese visitor market.
“We can do so much better if we develop a dedicated economic strategy for the visitor economy that prioritises investing in strong tourism and events marketing campaigns and reducing the costs of visas and travel.”
Lower image shows Senator Richard Colbeck.
2nd March 2016 - SPENDING HIGHLIGHTS THE EXPORT VALUE OF AUSTRALIAN TOURISM
8th February 2016 - INDEPENDENT CHINESE TOURISTS LOOKING BEYOND THE BIG CITIES
10th December 2015 - $95 MILLION FUNDING BOOST FOR REGIONAL TOURISM
2nd November 2015 - GROWTH FORECAST PUTS TOURISM AT THE FOREFRONT OF AUSTRALIAN EXPORTS
17th October 2015 - ARTN CAMPAIGNS FOR RECOGNITION FOR REGIONAL TOURISM
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