The 2018-19 Queensland Budget has recognised the tourism industry as one of the state’s major economic drivers, committing in excess of $180 million of additional funding – over the budget forecast period – to support public and private infrastructure, environmental initiatives, investment in events and market development.
QTIC Chief Executive Daniel Gschwind said QTIC’s focus in the past 12 months has been to continue to advocate for improvements to accessibility, sustainable opportunities in national parks, partnerships in infrastructure investment, workforce development, and the protection of the Great Barrier Reef.
“We are very pleased to see Queensland’s tourism opportunities feature very prominently in the Government’s economic strategy and budget investment,” said Mr Gschwind said.
Tourism is dependent on a confident and growing economy, which includes the public infrastructure needed to support a thriving community.
“Having improved roads, rail services and airports connectivity will not only benefit locals, but also visitors and the tourism industry. It will position Queensland for a more competitive future,” said Mr Gschwind.
Among the new tourism industry investment initiatives are:
- An additional $46 million for the Regional Tourism Infrastructure and Experience Development Program
- An additional $48.6 million for the Attracting Tourism Fund
- Increased funding of $36 million over three years to attract more major events to Queensland
Such a strong investment in the future of the tourism industry also means an investment in new jobs.
“Programs like Skilling Queenslanders for Work, along with the recently released Queensland Tourism Workforce Plan, are necessary and a great step in the right direction, when it comes to building the workforce needed for the thousands of new tourism jobs on offer,” said Mr Gschwind.
“The challenge is ours to take on but Queensland has a strong competitive tourism advantage.”
Mr Gschwind said the industry also welcomes the Government’s continued focus on environmental initiatives to protect our natural tourism assets, including the Great Barrier Reef.
“A total of $330 million towards specific reef initiates over five years is an important commitment towards one of Queensland’s most significant tourism assets,” he said.
"We also acknowledge the Government's strategic efforts to address climate change, decarbonise Great Barrier Reef islands, reduce plastic pollution and create a more sustainable industry."
The tourism industry is very engaged in this effort. Last month QTIC released a climate adaptation plan for the tourism industry, which was produced with the support of the Department of Environment and Science.
“Together these go towards Queensland’s credentials as a green destination and towards its sustainability goals,” said Mr Gschwind.
>> Get a breakdown of the key tourism-related budget highlights in this factsheet.
For interviews please contact:
Daniel Gschwind, QTIC Chief Executive – 0419 219 795
Linden Dale, QTIC Communications Officer – 0400 750 029