Spring has sprung and change is in the air. As you may be aware, I have recently announced that I will be taking a six-month secondment at the new entity for tourism and major events, Visit Victoria, in the role of GM Regional, and so, while this is not goodbye, you might hear less from me for a little while.
I am pleased to take up this wonderful opportunity, which I believe signals the value placed by policymakers on the role of VTIC and industry insight in governance as we work together to drive Victoria’s Visitor Economy.
Please join me in welcoming experienced tourism professional Erin Joyce who will act as VTIC Chief Executive for the corresponding period.
Despite my own change, there have been many considerable changes for industry of late, and many more matters arising. Throughout this, the importance of consulting with industry and the potential for us to play a partnership role with government is highlighted.
The State Government’s recently-launched new brand for Victoria is a fitting example of the importance of industry consultation and the need for collaboration between industry and government. While we acknowledge the importance of renewal, the Jigsaw Brand has served us well, and has been a key strength for Victoria. We’re hopeful that a brand solution for consumer-facing marketing may be developed and for genuine consultation with the industry regarding the most appropriate use of the Jigsaw as brand architecture for the future.
Another example which highlights the great need for industry consultation is the State Government’s action to reduce maximum lease terms in Victoria’s national parks from 99 to 21 years. VTIC has responded strongly to this action, calling on the Parliament of Victoria to consider reducing maximum lease terms to no less than 50 years. Our main concern is it will discourage much needed tourism investment.
We look forward to working through these changes and are pleased with the increased focus on the Victorian Visitor Economy.
I would like to thank the VTIC Board and VECCI for enabling my secondment, and I look forward to staying in touch with VTIC members and stakeholders in the coming months.