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Western Australian Government commits $30 million in events funding
Tourism in Western Australia is set to benefit from a $30 million boost in events funding as part of the 2016/17 budget.
The funding includes $19 million to host major events at the Perth Stadium and a reversal of $3.15 million in planned budget cuts to Perth Convention Bureau (PCB) – with an additional $7.55 million budget funding allocated to PCB.
Western Australian Premier and Tourism Minister Colin Barnett said the funding was “absolutely timely” and would help to grow the sector, particularly attracting international visitors.
Speaking in advance of the budget, Premier Barnett stated “there is a theme in the budget of bringing to fruition some of the measures taken to broaden and diversify the economy.”
Tourism Council WA Chief Executive Evan Hall was pleased to hear the Government was listening to the sector by reversing its planned cuts of the Perth Convention Bureau.
Hall stated “extensive budget scrutiny by all sides has shown PCB to be an outstanding performer, returning $30 for every $1 invested by the government.
“Tourism Council WA estimates the additional funding for PCB would deliver at least $260 million news tourism dollars for the State economy over four years.”
Hall suggested that the $19 million for major events would bring international sporting events and world-class entertainment spectaculars to Perth Stadium. The funding commitment will allow bidding now to secure major events for 2017/?18 onwards when the Stadium opens.
He added “Tourism Council WA estimates the $19 million stadium event funding should attract at least 250,000 international and interstate visitors to WA.
“International sporting events like soccer and rugby will draw visitors to WA. These visitors spend money on transport, food, hotels and shopping across the State, creating economic activity and jobs.”
Hall said the tourism industry would work with the government to promote regional touring packages for international and interstate spectators attending major events at Perth Stadium.
He continued “states like Victoria have built their tourism industry on the back of a solid calendar of major events. The new stadium and $19 million events funding will deliver a similar boost to the WA tourism economy and jobs.”
A further $1 million has been committed to a program to attract South-East Asian and Chinese visitors to celebrate Chinese New Year in Perth.
Images: The planned Perth Stadium (top) and the Perth Convention Exhibition Centre (below).
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