Victoria Needs to Maintain Momentum in Growing Visitor Economy

The Victorian visitor economy is strategically positioned to seize the title of Australia’s leading destination for international visitor expenditure if it can maintain momentum with a Budget that invests in the sector, according to the Tourism & Transport Forum Australia’s (TTF) pre-budget submission.

Victoria has achieved a strong surge in international visitor expenditure in 2015 to reach $6.52 billion (up an incredible 30 per cent) compared to NSW’s $8.449 billion (up 19 per cent) and bolting away from Queensland’s $4.934 billion (also up 19 per cent).

International visitors traveling to Victoria spend more per person ($2691) when compared to NSW ($2470).

“Victoria has aggressively targeted the visitor economy as a growth sector over the past two decades and this has certainly paid dividends with a strong performance across key international visitor indicators,” said Margy Osmond, TTF CEO.

“If Victoria can maintain this competitive growth rate it could overtake NSW as the leader in international visitor expenditure by the end of 2018.

“Now is not the time for the Victorian Government to take its eyes off the prize by limiting the investment that it makes in the visitor economy.

“The Victorian Budget needs to consolidate the work that has been done in reforming Victoria’s tourism agencies into Visit Victoria, by ensuring it has long-term, dedicated and competitive funding to continue the impressive growth rate that is being achieved.

“It is crucial to provide Visit Victoria with adequate funding to support activities beyond major events to include business events, tourism marketing and regional tourism.

Ms Osmond said the Victorian Government should ensure Visit Victoria has untied funding so that it can remain an agile marketing body able to leverage opportunities presented by high-yield visitor markets, such as China and Korea, as well as respond to new and emerging demand.

“Victoria is in the right position after years of building its visitor economy to give NSW a run for its money in attracting high spending international visitors.”