Tourism industry united nationally in calling for post-March business support


National and state tourism bodies have been united this week in urging the Commonwealth Government to provide targeted support for tourism operators set to struggle beyond the scheduled end date for the JobKeeper program.

QTIC Chief Executive Daniel Gschwind said, “JobKeeper has been a highly effective lifeline for tens of thousands of businesses in our industry. Many will still struggle to survive without some support as long as international borders remain shut and uncertainty remains over domestic travel conditions”.

The Federal Government has been firm in its plans to cease the current JobKeeper program in March this year.

Queensland’s Premier, Annastacia Palaszczuk, echoed the industry’s call for a continuation of tourism business support after industry consultations in Cairns. The region is heavily affected by the continued suspension of all international travel and domestic uncertainty.

“We welcome the Premier’s support on this issue”, Mr Gschwind said.

QTIC is part of the Australian Tourism Industry Council (ATIC), bringing together all state and territory tourism councils.  ATIC has written to the Prime Minister, Treasurer and Trade and Tourism Minister, making the case that a properly targeted support program for affected businesses is required to maintain the viability of the industry and to retain skilled staff required for the recovery.

QTIC also raised the ongoing desperate need for business support in Friday’s Senate Committee Hearings in Brisbane into The future of Australia’s aviation sector, in the context of COVID-19 and conditions post pandemic.

Mr Gschwind continued, “The industry’s case has been stated clearly by all state tourism councils, including QTIC, and consistent with other national industry bodies, including the Australian Chamber of Commerce and Industry (ACCI).  While parts of the economy are recovering, many tourism operators are still under severe stress, caused by the COVID travel conditions.

“The long-term cost of letting businesses fail will far exceed the potential cost of investing in those businesses that will need support beyond the end of JobKeeper”.