Tourism in Action: Message from Daniel (May)

With workforce challenges well and truly on the agenda for our industry, we are very excited to launch the first event of our state-wide Regional Tourism Careers Roadshows this week in Brisbane. QTIC has played a very active role in this space for many years, and this latest initiative is a well-planned action of the Queensland Tourism Workforce Plan, which was developed by the Queensland Government in collaboration with industry. QTIC chairs the committee guiding the action implementation of the plan and the roadshow project is funded by the Department of Employment, Small Business and Training (DESBT). On Tuesday and Wednesday this week, aspiring young people – and some not so young – will engage with industry professionals and employers to encourage them to embark on a fulfilling career in our industry. The event at the TAFE campus at Southbank in Brisbane will be followed by an innovative virtual career event with the opportunity for job seekers to connect directly and personally with employers who are looking for staff. Regional events will follow. We need every practical help to get the pipeline for jobs and skills going! Please contact us if you want to be involved in the regional events.

Largely unreported, earlier this month, the Tourism Ministers of the G20 countries met in Rome, Italy, to discuss the recovery of the global travel and tourism industry and set out common goals and aspirations. Our very own Minister for Trade, Tourism and Investment, the Hon Dan Tehan MP, took part in the meeting, was a signatory to the Communique and endorsed the report, G20 Rome Guidelines for the Future of Tourism, on behalf of Australia. The report is a bold statement with a very positive and aspirational tone. The advocated actions should set an encouraging signal for all of us, including Australia in its current isolation. The Communique states that “the crisis presents an opportunity to rethink tourism for the future…” and advocates for measures that “shape a more resilient, sustainable and inclusive tourism sector…”. Specifically, the report also emphasises that we must “seek to restore confidence in travel and tourism and enable economic recovery”, enabling governments to “support, complement and coordinate safe international mobility initiatives”. I am encouraged that the Australian Government is endorsing these initiatives and look forward to strong policy steps to implement these intentions.

I am equally reassured that QTIC is on the right track with its own initiatives on many of the priority fronts identified by the G20 report. A top priority on the G20 list is Crisis Management and Resilience. The crisis management program and tools, delivered by QTIC over the last two years in collaboration with EarthCheck, are precisely what is now being advocated globally. Just last week we received additional State Government Funding to deliver the program on the Sunshine Coast, working with the Sunshine Coast Regional Council and industry. Other priority areas highlighted by the G20: capacity building, community and First Nations engagement, digital skills education, innovation and, of course, sustainable development, are all core elements in the QTIC strategic work plan. It is both reassuring and frustrating to see the alignment with the G20 priorities: reassuring that we are consistent with global expertise and frustrating that our resources are so limited to pursue all the opportunities that we can see. It is only through the support of our members that we have at least some voice for our industry. Thank you!

With the G20 report and the related United Nations World Tourism Organization’s (UNWTO’s), Recommendations for the Transition to a Green Travel and Tourism Economy, both the State and Federal Government have some pretty useful reference documents to prepare their respective tourism action plans that are currently in the making. QTIC is actively engaging with both processes and has already met with Liz Savage who chairs the Queensland effort; and Martin Ferguson who chairs the committee for the Federal plan.