THE region’s ailing tourism sector has received a significant boost with Gold Coast City Council (GCCC) approving an aggressive funding program for Gold Coast Tourism (GCT).
GCT will receive $11.4 million per annum over the next five years with an additional $2.5 million for new growth initiatives - totalling almost $60 million.
With the record low average tourist spend largely caused by a lack of new attractions, the funding boost could be the first of many steps in securing a positive future for the city’s $4.5 billion tourism industry.
GCT chairman Paul Donovan says the confidence and support of council is ‘to be commended’.
“This Council is one of the few in Australia that truly recognises the significance of tourism and is willing to fully support the industry,” he says.
“The tourism plan which (has been) delivered plots the success of the industry over the next five years and focuses on high return destination marketing with seven stimulus initiatives to increase visitor expenditure and average length of stay over the next 12 months.
“Last year the Gold Coast attracted a record 11 million visitors when other destinations were going backwards, so the core strategy is the best in the business, but we must be even more aggressive if we are to generate better yields for Gold Coast tourism businesses, today’s agreement empowers that.”
GCT’s core sustainability objective of outperforming other Australian tourism destinations remains the priority under the renewed tourism plan.
The seven key stimulus initiatives to increase tourism outcomes over the next 12 months are broken into the categories of: sport/event tourism; education tourism; China expansion and industry readiness; Gold Coast promotion on interstate and New Zealand television; aviation acquisition and protection; business events and conference growth; and Surfers Paradise Visitor Information Centre refurbishment.
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