Accommodation sector throws support behind Aust-China FTA

20 November, 2014

The signing of the China-Australia FTA during the G20 Summit in Brisbane earlier this month has been hailed as "an important step in the growth of the Chinese visitor economy" by the accommodation sector.

"The accommodation sector recognises the significance of the signing of this historic Free Trade Agreement," said Chief Executive of the Accommodation Association of Australia, Richard Munro.

"The Chinese visitor economy has seen significant increases in the number of Chinese tourists coming to Australia, particularly over the past three years."

Inbound expenditure growth

China is currently Australia's second largest inbound market by arrivals and they are forecast to represent about 40 per cent of inbound expenditure growth in the tourism sector up to 2022-23.

"The agreement will foster further opportunities for the accommodation sector directly through increased visitation, as well as promoting opportunities for key investments in tourism infrastructure," Munro said.

"With the extraordinary growth and potential in Chinese visitors to Australia, and with the fierce competition for this lucrative market, it is critical to ensure that our visa systems are calibrated in such a way to ensure that Chinese visitors are able to access Australian tourism products."

Further reach of 'Aust-owned' in China

As part of the FTA, China has also guaranteed that Australian service suppliers will be able to construct, renovate and operate wholly Australian-owned hotels and restaurants in China.

"This further access to the growing tourism markets within China may result in iconic Australian brands being seen across China," Munro said.