Tourism in Action: A word from Brett Fraser (June)

Earlier this month, our industry celebrated a major win when the Federal Government announced they would not cap the Working Holiday Maker (WHM) visa to 12 months; a cap that was originally proposed in the 2023 Migration Review.

This win comes off the back of significant advocacy efforts by QTIC and the Australian Tourism Industry Council (ATIC). Our organisations provided the Minister for Immigration with an analysis of the detrimental impacts of the proposed cap and later met with Minister Giles to stress the vital importance of long stay backpackers to tourism businesses.

Removing the proposed cap has been a top pre-election priority for QTIC and ATIC. Its removal will now allow businesses and marketers to better promote tourism jobs and destinations to long stay WHMs.

We thank the Federal Government for listening to the concerns of our industry and for taking steps that benefit those living and working on the ground. It is important that decisions from the top continue to be guided by the very people who build and sustain our economy.

As an election year, advocacy and driving industry priorities have taken on even greater importance for the QTIC team. Earlier this month, the State Budget was handed down, with cost-of-living relief an anticipated major focus of spending. While we welcome investment in key infrastructure projects and economic development initiatives, the budget lacked critical commitments for tourism businesses and missed an opportunity to invest in measures that would improve the operating environment for industry operators.

As we head into the state elections in October, we will continue advocating on the key issues impacting Queensland tourism businesses and meet with government leaders to stress these concerns.

While funding and support packages are always welcomed by our industry, it is equally important that much-needed structural changes also take priority within our advocacy efforts. Improving the working environment for operators through changes to the legislative environment and reducing red tape are just as important as securing grants and money in the bank. That is why securing wins like the removal of the one-year WHM visa cap are so important.

As our members requested in our recent membership survey, QTIC’s delivery of forward looking data and insights is vital, ensuring operators have the knowledge and insights needed to make sound business decisions. Making this data available for our members has been a major priority for QTIC in recent months. In the coming months, we will be making this data available exclusively for our members. These accurate and regular reports will provide important metrics on forward bookings, visitor spend and visitor origins. I look forward to sharing these key industry insights with you and your business soon.

Kind regards,

Brett Fraser