The Victoria Tourism Industry Council (VTIC) welcomes today’s announcement of an additional $25 million over two years for the state’s marketing agency Visit Victoria and an additional $20 million funding boost to the Major Events Fund.
Victoria Tourism Industry Council Chief Executive Brad Ostermeyer said; “Following the creation of Visit Victoria, the tourism and events industry is looking forward to fresh domestic and international campaigns that showcase our offerings to the rest of the world. The funding boost for business and major events is essential if we are to meet the 2024/25 target of $36.5 billion in visitor expenditure.”
Mr Ostermeyer said the events funding would ensure that investments in the re-development of Melbourne Park, and the expansion of the Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Centre, were maximised.
Cultural tourism is also well-served, with $28.7 million allocated to the National Gallery of Victoria; $40 million for the upgrades to the Arts Centre; $5 million for the Australian Centre for the Moving Image; and $2.8 million for the Shrine of Remembrance.
The investments in transport infrastructure delivered in today’s state budget deliver on VTIC’s call for improved connectivity and mobility around the state, which will help facilitate greater visitation to regional Victoria. A new airport rail plan will be developed with $10 million funding, taking Victoria one step closer to an airport rail link as advocated by VTIC. Digital connectivity, another of VTIC’s priorities, also gets a boost with a commitment of $45 million for digital infrastructure.
“We are also encouraged by the $27.5 million commitment to Regional Partnerships and tourism projects in regional Victoria, which include early works for the Shipwreck Coast Masterplan, cycling in the north-east, and development of Swan Hill riverfront,” Mr Ostermeyer said.
“While many Victorian tourism businesses will benefit from significant rail and road infrastructure funding and cuts to payroll tax, VTIC would have liked to see funding for significant regional tourism infrastructure projects such as the Puffing Billy Masterplan and the Geelong Convention Centre.”