• Victoria Tourism Industry Council (VTIC)
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Advancing our industry – we need all hands on deck

26 /02/ 2015 Comments are Closed

By VTIC Chief Executive Dianne Smith

This summer, I went to Sorrento Back Beach. After taking photos of my son in the surf, I sauntered back to my sun shelter to sip a latte on the sand. That evening, I ate Victorian mussels, drank Victorian wine and watched a spectacular sunset, as well as a little tennis on TV. Later that week, I had the ‘real life’ experience at the Australian Open. I questioned: ‘Could I be much more contented?’

I acknowledge that many of you were working furiously while I had this break – rest assured this ends my holiday references – yet I share them with you to highlight the appeal and diversity of our state’s tourism experience.
Just a few highlights of recent and coming weeks include World Cup cricket, the Lion King musical, the Tupperware convention, the 2015 Australian International Airshow at Avalon Airport, Chinese New Year, White Night Melbourne and AIME – and of course, there’s much more…

To quote Deloitte, tourism is a super-growth sector, especially in Victoria.

Despite our ‘liveability’, however, each year since 2011, more Victorians have travelled overseas than holidayed in our own state. The money being lost through our holiday travel trade deficit is more than $7 billion annually – the highest of all states and territories.

You, our members, tell us you want to grow, invest more in products and services, collaborate more and employ more people. At the same time, you tell us about the rising business costs, and in particular that wages are squeezing profits.

Disappointingly, this comes at a time when youth unemployment is 13.1 per cent in Victoria. In the Great Ocean Road region, it’s 18 per cent, the highest of any region in the state.

In this environment – with both unrealised potential and room for improvement in tourism – we need all hands on deck to advance our industry, hence the importance of being a VTIC member.

We can advocate more effectively with your input and, representing a growing and vibrant $20 billion industry employing more than 200,000 people, we have a better chance of being heard and grabbing attention.
If I were a minister, MP or mayor, I would respond better if presented with a clear, unified agenda – which is especially relevant when other sectors are suffering job losses.

Last year, on your behalf we presented a case to the major parties, with a call to action asking them to:

• be more serious about jobs and tourism (tourism jobs are local jobs)
• take a more cohesive ‘whole of government’ policy approach to tourism
• help us realise the growth potential of the tourism industry, in partnership with governments.

What we mean by a partnership approach is industry driving innovation while government provides support through activities like investment facilitation, cooperative marketing, running several attractions (like our museums, zoos, public galleries and parks), and seeding events.

In the past, this approach to tourism has delivered a significant return on investment for the state and it should continue to do so.

In conveying to governments that tourism is a priority for jobs growth, I urge everyone to emphasise these key messages: TOURISM = JOBS and government spending on tourism is an investment, not a subsidy. This is especially important as we head towards the Andrews Government’s first State Budget.

Dianne Smith

About the Author

Dianne Smith

Dianne Smith has enjoyed being Chief Executive of Victoria Tourism Industry Council (VTIC) since January 2012. In this role, Dianne draws on her vast knowledge and experience gained from over 20 years in the industry which has included marketing, visitor services, policy and strategy roles in regional Victoria and Melbourne.

Events

april

20apr10:00 am12:00 pmGoulburn River Valley Entrant Workshop2018 RACV Victorian Tourism Awards10:00 am - 12:00 pm Yea Peppercorn Hotel

27apr10:00 am12:00 pmThe Yarra Valley & Dandenong Ranges Entrant Workshop2018 RACV Victorian Tourism Awards10:00 am - 12:00 pm Meletos

30apr2:00 pm4:00 pmThe Great Ocean Road Entrant Workshop2018 RACV Victorian Tourism Awards2:00 pm - 4:00 pm Alkina Lodge

may

01may9:00 am5:00 pmDestination Melbourne presents: Accessible Tourism Masterclass9:00 am - 5:00 pm Crowne Plaza Melbourne

02may10:00 am12:00 pmThe Mornington Peninsula Entrant Workshop2018 RACV Victorian Tourism Awards10:00 am - 12:00 pm St Andrews Beach Brewery

02may12:00 pm2:30 pmVictorian Chamber presents: Post-Budget Lunch with Tim Pallas MP, Treasurer of Victoria12:00 pm - 2:30 pm The Ballroom, Park Hyatt Melbourne

02may5:30 pm7:30 pmVTIC 2018 Mixer Series - May Tourism Networking EventConnect and reconnect at our monthly mixers5:30 pm - 7:30 pm Mercure Melbourne Treasury Gardens

04may10:30 am12:30 pmThe Ballarat Entrant Workshop2018 RACV Victorian Tourism Awards10:30 am - 12:30 pm Ballarat Town Hall

07may10:00 am12:00 pmGeelong & the Bellarine Entrant Workshop2018 RACV Victorian Tourism Awards10:00 am - 12:00 pm Tourism Greater Geelong & the Bellarine

14may10:00 am12:00 pmGrampians Entrant Workshop2018 RACV Victorian Tourism Awards10:00 am - 12:00 pm Aradale Asylum

16may10:00 am12:00 pmBendigo Entrant Workshop2018 RACV Victorian Tourism Awards10:00 am - 12:00 pm Masons of Bendigo

16may10:30 am11:30 amVTIC Webinar Series - Turning small business competitors into partnersImproving the world, one webinar at a time!10:30 am - 11:30 am

31may9:00 am5:00 pmDestination Melbourne presents: Melbourne LIVE9:00 am - 5:00 pm Arts Centre Melbourne - The Pavilion

june

06jun6:00 pm8:00 pmVTIC 2018 Mixer Series - June Tourism Networking EventConnect and reconnect at our monthly mixers6:00 pm - 8:00 pm SEA LIFE Melbourne Aquarium

july

04jul6:00 pm8:00 pmVTIC 2018 Mixer Series - July Tourism Networking EventConnect and reconnect at our monthly mixers6:00 pm - 8:00 pm SEA LIFE Melbourne Aquarium

30jul(jul 30)8:00 am31(jul 31)3:30 pmVictorian Tourism Conference 2018SAVE THE DATE8:00 am - 3:30 pm (31) RACV Cape Schanck Resort

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