Infrastructure budget to drive Queensland’s tourism and transport sectors

The Queensland Government’s significant investment in a number of big-ticket infrastructure projects in its 2018-19 Budget will help to transform the State’s transport and tourism sectors, the Tourism & Transport Forum Australia (TTF) said today.

TTF Chief Executive Margy Osmond congratulated the Palaszczuk Government on directly addressing the growing costs of congestion by investing in key infrastructure projects designed to future-proof the State’s transport network.

“Overcoming the problems caused by Queensland’s rapid growth and congestion requires transformative infrastructure investment, and the Government has come to the table in what can certainly be described as an infrastructure budget,” Ms Osmond said.

“The enormous $45 billion investment in infrastructure projects over the next four years, including $900 million towards a series of upgrades to the M1 and $733 million for the State’s most critical infrastructure project, the Cross River Rail, is a very welcome recognition that Queensland’s growth and congestion problems must be addressed.

“The $160 million allocated to the Beerburrum to Nambour rail duplication will, once completed, also significantly reduce congestion across the Sunshine Coast by increasing capacity and linking up with other public transport options across the region.

“TTF also welcomes the commitment to invest $371 million over four years towards developing a new public transport public ticketing system.”

Ms Osmond said that through the 2018-19 Budget the Palaszczuk Government has continued to deliver funding to further develop tourism as a key long-term driver of economic and jobs growth across the State.

“The Government must be congratulated for its commitment to continued funding for Tourism and Events Queensland to attract more visitors through marketing, events and experience development and provide much needed certainty to the tourism sector at a time it needs it most,” Ms Osmond said.

“Over its past few Budgets, the Palaszczuk Government has recognised that the tourism sector has the potential to become the most effective and sustainable way to diversify beyond the resources economy, and that has continued with the $94 million in funding over five years to progress a range of programs under the Growing Tourism, Growing Tourism Jobs initiative.

“The $48 million for the Attracting Tourism Fund to provide incentives to attract new international airline routes and cruise ships to Queensland is a big win, particularly in the wake of last week’s announcement a new international cruise terminal will be operating in Brisbane within two years after Port of Brisbane and Carnival Australia reached a commercial agreement.

“The $46 million Regional Tourism Infrastructure and Experience Development Program and Outback Tourism Infrastructure Fund to assist communities to grow tourism by developing new and improved tourism experiences or products great news for regional Queensland and will play a huge role in encouraging the millions of people who visit every year to explore every corner of this incredible State.

“Over the past decade Queensland has emerged as one of Australia’s most vibrant culture, heritage and the arts destinations, and the $125 million commitment for a new state-of-the-art theatre to be built at the Queensland Performing Arts Centre in Brisbane will continue Brisbane’s cultural renaissance.”