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Parties Must Support Tourism’s Growth Potential

June 2, 2016 Business News No Comments Email Email

The Australian Tourism Export Council has called all political parties to recognise the significance of our tourism export industry to the overall success of our economy by supporting policies which enable tourism businesses to maximise their growth potential.Today’s release of the International Visitor Survey (IVS) shows international visitor spend continues to record significant growth with figures up 17% in the past 12 months led by the Chinese market reaching a record high of $8.9 billion.

“These numbers once again reveal the potential of Australia’s tourism export industry and the growing contribution it now makes to the economy as a leading sustainable and job generating export for Australia,” ATEC Managing Director, Peter Shelley said today.

“We therefore call on all parties to commit to strengthening the tourism sector and supporting our businesses to thrive.

“Over the next 10 years, the global travel and tourism industry is forecast to grow faster than the broader economy and more rapidly than most other industries and today’s IVS figures reinforce these growth projections.”

Mr Shelley said the IVS figures reveal a rebound from our traditional inbound markets, including a welcome return from the Japanese market which had seen an increase in both spend (up 10% year-on-year) and visitation.

“Australia’s tourism export industry has done an impressive job in evolving its offering and embracing new challenges and opportunities and we are now seeing a return on this effort via the growth in international visitors from across a broad range of countries.

“Australia is recognised as being an attractive and safe, value-for money destination with professional tourism and hospitality business delivering high quality experiences and the industry is doing its bit to deliver a globally competitive product.

“We now need all political parties to open their eyes to the significant, sustainable potential of this sector and to actively support ‘growth driven’ policy settings which will enable Australia to claim a greater share of global tourism into the future.

The industry is requesting the following policy positions for inclusion in the policy platforms of the major parties:

  • Continuing the freeze of the $55 holiday tax (Passenger Movement Charge) on Australians and overseas visitors traveling out of the country
  • Reducing the cost of visas for key and emerging markets such as China and Indonesia and continuing to invest in the innovation of our visa application process
  • Providing a substantial, game-changing investment in destination marketing to attract more international visitors to Australia
  • Supporting new initiatives to develop and increase the workforce of the visitor economy.

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