The Victoria Tourism Industry Council (VTIC) has welcomed the announcement of a new joint State and Federal Government tourism plan to address labour and skills shortages.
VTIC Chief Executive, Dianne Smith, says the plan, to be rolled out in two of Victoria’s key tourism regions, the Mornington Peninsula and Phillip Island, will shine a light on local employment and training requirements.
“We welcome the approach via the Tourism Employment Plan which will commence a dialogue between tourism operators and small businesses in the Mornington Peninsula and Phillip Island regions, and align them with supporting government and industry programs,” says Ms Smith.
“The consultation process will help to identify employment and training needs and will no doubt highlight the need for some of the tourism, hospitality and events courses – under threat following the proposed changes to the TAFE sector – to remain to support the future growth of the industry.
“The tourism industry currently employs 193,000 Victorians throughout the state and is worth $15.2 billion, along with an events industry worth $2.4 billion.
“Tourism significantly contributes to Victoria’s economy as a whole, and particularly in Phillip Island where its contribution is the highest of any region in Victoria. The Mornington Peninsula also has the second highest number of tourism businesses employing workers in regional Victoria.
“With a range of increased cost forces affecting the industry such as proposed changes influencing Australia’s current and future labour market supply, the effects of the Australian dollar and other imposts from the carbon tax, now is an appropriate time to support the overall growth achievable by our tourism, hospitality and events sector in Victoria, especially in emerging markets such as China, India and Indonesia.
“The tourism industry currently has 36,000 employment vacancies and we envisage the Tourism Employment Plans will help small businesses in the tourism industry to fill labour gaps.”