TTF Media Release
Thursday 15 July 2021
DISASTER SUPPORT CHANGES A START BUT MORE WORK TO BE DONE TO RESCUE TOURISM INDUSTRY
The Tourism & Transport Forum (TTF) said new Federal Government national disaster support payments flagged for those in lockdowns linked to a federally declared COVID hotspot would help to soften the blow for the struggling tourism industry but there was still more work to be done to ensure its survival.
TTF CEO Margy Osmond said the tourism industry had long been pushing for further Commonwealth support to replace JobKeeper due to the ongoing uncertainty created by a delayed vaccine rollout resulting in lockdowns which will now include Victoria from midnight tonight.
“This long-called for support will help some businesses to keep their doors open particularly among smaller operators but any support will be required beyond the end of the lockdown and will need to address larger businesses with payrolls in the hundreds of thousands of dollars. This will ensure that the national tourism, transport and aviation sector emerges in one piece in the wake of the NSW and now impending Victorian lockdowns,” Margy Osmond said.
“Without further support, there will quite simply be no tourism and hospitality industry left to begin the recovery post lockdown and who knows how many more lockdowns, domestic border closures and ongoing hits to travel certainty our sector will have had to endure while the vaccine rollout is progressed.
“The $5.1 billion package announced earlier this week by the Federal and NSW Governments of which $4.1 billion was funded by NSW was widely welcomed and was a comprehensive package but businesses won’t bounce back immediately once restrictions are lifted nor will confidence in travel return.
“This is the third school holiday period in a row that has been decimated by lockdowns and border closures and I have very real concerns about the September holidays and the likelihood that Australians will plan travel with the threat of more border restrictions and cancellations hanging over their heads.
“Recent research undertaken by tourism economists Stafford Strategy revealed Sydney’s outbreak and the border restrictions imposed completely decimated the mid-year holiday period with spending down by $6.3 billion nationally.
NSW alone lost business of $2.1 billion or $153 million a day – almost one third of the total national losses.
“We look forward to seeing more detail after National Cabinet meets tomorrow, but we welcome this acknowledgment at long last that our employees and businesses will be supported in some way at least during the lockdown. We will also continue to push for this support to remain as long as is needed beyond official state lockdowns.
“It is the long-term, sustainable industries of tourism, transport and aviation, that if supported during this critical survival period will pay dividends to state economies and the national economy over many decades to come.”
Contact: TTF Manager Policy, Media & Government Relations Lindsay Hermes firstname.lastname@example.org 0418 948 447