Australian tourism industry on track for growth

20 November, 2013

The Australian tourism industry was on track to meet its aim of increasing overnight visitor spending to between $115 billion and $140 billion by 2020, trade and investment minister Andrew Robb told a tourism conference in Canberra recently.

Robb said Australia's tourism industry is one of our country's great strengths.

"The government is committed to creating the right operating environment for the tourism sector by freezing the passenger movement charge, scrapping the carbon tax and helping employers find workers with the right skills,"  Robb said in a message to the Australian Tourism Directions Conference.

"I plan to attract more international investment, create more jobs and strengthen Australia's prosperity.

"Our role in government is to support tourism businesses to do what they do best by creating the right operating environment."

Robb also congratulated the industry on increasing spending by international visitors by almost three times the global average.

"Tourism is important to the Australian economy. It is worth $107 billion, directly employs more than half a million Australians and is our largest services industry export, earning $26 billion a year.

"Freezing the passenger movement charge will provide certainty for the tourism industry and allow it to focus on developing new high quality products that will drive demand.

"Abolishing the carbon tax will save the industry money and provide tourism businesses with more capacity to develop more world class experiences," Robb said.

To help industry overcome regional labour and skill shortages in tourism, the government also launched the Tourism Employment Plan Guide and a new Tourism Employment Plan Advisory Service.

The Tourism Employment Guide will provide regions with a blueprint for how to address their unique labour and skills issues; the Tourism Employment Plan Advisory Service will ensure regions have enough support to help them find solutions that work best for them.