The Australian Tourism Export Council today welcomed the announcement of expanded Australian Visa Application Centres (AVAC), taking the services to Chengdu where it will service the Western China Region.“Visa access for Chinese visitors is extremely an important part of our ongoing success in attracting this market to Australia,” ATEC Managing Director, Peter Shelley said today.
“We are pleased the Government has listened to our feedback and taken this important step in supporting our industry in finding ways to bring down the barriers to export market growth.
“Our strength in the global visitor market relies on our ability to compare favorably against our competitors and that means having a streamlined, simple and easily accessed visa system for the Chinese visitor particularly.”
Mr Shelley said the Government had made some important adjustments to the Chinese visa system in the recent past and these had contributed to the 22% increase in visitor numbers in the past 12 months.
“Chinese visitors are spending a phenomenal $7.7bn a year in Australia and this spend is currently growing at 43% – it’s a market we can’t afford to get wrong.
“We have a strong product to offer and we congratulate the Government on working with our industry to find ways to further improve visa access for the Chinese markets and all our markets internationally.
“We urge the Government to continue its progressive approach to visas by fast-tracking the rollout of e-lodgement for other key emerging markets such as India and Latin America”