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ATEC ‘Meeting Place’ reboot attracts top international buyers to Cairns

Fitting given its status as one of Australia’s most popular destinations for international visitors, Cairns this week is playing host to more than 100 key international buyers attending one of the biggest events on the export tourism calendar, Meeting Place.

The event has brought together more than 450 delegates taking part in more than 4500 face-to-face meetings with attendees flow-on benefits to host city Cairns predicted to contribute more than 1,000 visitor nights and $1.5 million to the Tropical North. 

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ATEC Managing Director, Peter Shelley

Australian Tourism Export Council (ATEC) Managing Director, Peter Shelley said it is hugely important that Australian tourism products get back to their markets and put the message out that they are eagerly awaiting the arrival of international visitors.

“As the industry reboots, we are facing many challenges and obstacles from aviation capacity, to workforce stress to global factors like the war in Ukraine, so it’s vital that tourism businesses get back out there and get noticed,” he said.

“As we move forward post-covid the industry needs to engage as ‘Team Australia’ to re-establish ourselves as a highly desirable destination and be competitive against the rest of the world for the global tourism dollar.” 

Queensland’s Assistant Tourism Minister, Michael Healy said ATEC Meeting Place was an important part of rebuilding Queensland’s international visitor economy and supporting jobs. 

“We want our international tourism partners to experience Tropical North Queensland’s iconic visitor attractions and great tropical Queensland lifestyle for themselves,” Mr Healy said. 

“ATEC Meeting Place gives Cairns’ tourism and hospitality operators the chance to meet face-to-face with the buyers who sell and promote Queensland holiday packages to overseas travel agents. 

“We know when international buyers have first-hand knowledge of our world-class visitor and amazing cultural experiences, they’ll recommend them again and again to overseas agents and holidaymakers.   

“Attracting overseas visitors is a highly competitive business, even more so since the pandemic. 

“That’s why it’s crucial to leverage great opportunities like ATEC Meeting Place for the post-COVID recovery of Queensland’s international tourism industry. 

“This is our to time shine on the international stage and welcome the world with unbeatable holiday experiences visitors won’t find anywhere else but Queensland. 

Meeting Place to play key role in restarting $1 billion export industry

Tourism Tropical North Queensland (TTNQ) CEO, Mark Olsen said the inbound tour operators participating in Meeting Place would play a key role in helping to restart the region’s $1 billion a year export industry. 

“Hosting these travel trade VIPs gives us the opportunity to discuss Tropical North Queensland’s strong focus on sustainability and allows them to discover why we are a leading nature-based destination,” he said. 

“Our destination’s success has come from our diverse world-class visitor experiences, our leadership in ecotourism and our warm hospitality.

“This week the Tropical North Queensland tourism industry will ensure these VIPs not only see great, but leave greater knowing that they have a deeper understanding of the World Heritage areas and people they are visiting.” 

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