Figures released this week by Tourism Research Australia (TRA) show the sobering truth that our national capital is behind parts of rural and regional NSW and remote Western Australia when it comes to tourism, Shadow Minister for Tourism and Arts Brendan Smyth said today.
“It would be reasonable to expect the major capitals of Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane to lead the way on tourism in Australia. However, it does make you think that something isn’t right when Canberra, the National Capital, is behind the NSW South Coast and the Hunter region as well as south west Western Australia,” Mr Smyth said.
“The latest data shows the ACT is ranked 12th in tourism expenditure and 13th in total overnight visitors. In 2013-14 both the South Coast and Hunter exceeded $2 billion in expenditure. Canberra recorded $1.674 billion.
“Furthermore, the regional indicators show that tourism expenditure in Canberra dropped from $1.864 billion in 2012-13 to $1.674 billion in 2013-14. The total number of overnight visitors fell from 2,227,000 to 2,196,000. This resulted in the visitor to population ratio falling from 7.2 to 7.0.
“The Barr government obviously hasn’t done enough to boost tourism in the ACT following the Centenary Year and isn’t looking to find ways to market the National Capital,” Mr Smyth concluded