Federal Budget: Mayor takes lead in tourism push

Gold Coast Mayor Tom Tate will write to Federal Tourism Minister Simon Birmingham to ensure the coast features prominently in a planned international marketing campaign, headed by Tourism Australia.

The Federal Budget last night increased the budget for Tourism Australia by $5 million – to $175 million. TA is planning a major international marketing campaign to lure overseas tourists to our country.
“I will be on the front foot with correspondence to the Federal Minister before tomorrow, urging him to ensure Australia’s tourism epicentre features heavily in the campaign,” he said.
“We have two international airports servicing the coast, both within a 90km radius. Further, we are achieving record international visitor numbers and we are renewing our tourism products.
“It would be remiss not to ensure the Gold Coast was the leading drawcard in any new campaign.”
Mayor Tate said he would also again ask the Federal Government to relocate Tourism Australia’s headquarters, from Sydney to the coast.
“Southport is the prime location as it is our recognised CBD,” he said.
“If they don’t agree to TA being relocated, I want to at least see a satellite office established. For decades, we have led the country as the No 1 destination. Now is the time for the Federal Government to show their support through a head office on the coast.”
The coast will benefit from:
• Federal commitment towards Light Rail 3A ($112 million);
• Incentives for small business to purchase equipment (instant asset write off increased to $30,000);
• Roads to Recovery Black Spot funding (around $30 million);
• M1 upgrade funding;
• $8 million fast train study along eastern seaboard; and
• Income tax cuts across the board.
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