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NSW Government reveals plan to bring Accom sector back from the brink

The NSW Government has rolled out a bold plan to boost the state’s visitor economy post-COVID and make NSW the premier visitor economy of the Asia-Pacific by 2030. The plan has been praised by industry insiders, but will it be enough?

This week Stuart Ayres minister for jobs, investment, tourism and Western Sydney launched the Visitor Economy Strategy 2030 to “aid recovery and turbocharge visitor economy growth through securing world-class events, boosting regional visitation and building new tourism icons and visitor experiences for the future”.

Tourism Accommodation Australia (TAA) welcomes this new plan with CEO Michael Johnson commenting that the revised 2030 Visitor Economy Strategy takes into consideration the impact of the 2020 summer bushfires and the ongoing damage inflicted by COVID-19 restrictions on NSW tourism. 

He said: “The recovery ahead will be long and difficult but will certainly be made easier with a strong plan and a clear vision for the rebuilding process.”

Talking about the new plan Minister Ayres said: “If COVID-19 has shown us anything it’s that the visitor economy is everyone’s business – it accounts for almost 300,000 jobs and 110,000 businesses and is integral to our state’s economy.”

“Once health advice allows, NSW will bounce back as a result of a $200 million a year investment to help get the tourism sector back on its feet; we have shown how agility and resilience will keep our State open for business throughout this challenging pandemic.

“NSW is the largest visitor economy in Australia and this strategy is a roadmap to rebuild our $43 billion visitor economy and grow it to $65 billion by 2030 to become the premier visitor economy of the Asia-Pacific. From regions to roads, planning to precincts, the strategy provides a framework to guide investment and decision-making in the areas of marketing, events, business support, regulations, training and tourism infrastructure.”

Prepared by the Government’s tourism and major events agency Destination NSW the new strategy features these 2030 targets:

  • To reach $65 billion in total visitor expenditure, up on the previous overnight visitor expenditure target of $55 billion by 2030 which was set in 2018
  • A new focus on the day trip market, worth an estimated $10 billion by 2030
  • Growing opportunities in regional NSW as a key to the future, to contribute $25 billion total
  • The domestic market will be the primary focus until international travel resumes

“The Visitor Economy Strategy is not just about recovery, it’s about the future,” Minister Ayres said.

“The NSW Government is already charging ahead to create new tourism experiences and icons such as the new Sydney Fish Market, new sporting stadiums and cultural institutions and world-class walking tracks in regional NSW. We will bolster our reputation for staging premier events including the Australian exclusive production of Hamilton, Vivid Sydney, Disney’s Frozen and we are close to securing the full suite of 10 World Cup sporting events for NSW in 10 years.”

A Senior Officers Group will be established to coordinate funding and government services relating to the visitor economy while Destination NSW will lead a coordinated, whole of government approach to implementing the strategy.

Mr Johnson agrees the strategy highlights the strengths of NSW as a destination.

He said it includes a major Sydney rebranding process, a focus on delivering key events and encouraging more investment in visitor infrastructure, all of which will position the state’s visitor economy to rebound strongly. We commend the Government and Destination NSW for developing such a robust plan that addresses the current challenging period and the return to pre-Covid and future growth.”

Simon McGrath, CEO Accor Pacific, also said the Visitor Economy Strategy was a solid roadmap which demonstrates the NSW Government’s understanding of how valuable tourism is to our state. From an industry point of view the Visitor Economy Strategy is prepared in a very collaborative way, with a focused approach. As a result, it has delivered an incredibly dynamic and strong platform which gives confidence to investors, operators and the industry as a whole. The result of this is that it will bring renewed interest from the private sector into tourism in NSW.”

Mandy Clarke

Mandy has over 15 years of accommodation and tourism industry writing experience. She is the editor of Accom News & Resort News & director of Multimedia Pty Ltd. She is a retired registered nurse with a 25 year NHS career that followed a few years in hotel housekeeping.

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