• Victoria Tourism Industry Council (VTIC)
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From the Chief Executive, Felicia Mariani

Thursday 5 March 2020

This year’s Visitor Economy Forum was an event to be remembered. With over 550 people in attendance, it was a tremendous opportunity for all of us to come together after what has been an horrific start to 2020.

While there was a degree of somberness to be respected in light of the hardships and challenges that our industry continues to face, there was such an uplifting mood of optimism and strong camaraderie that made the day truly special. Clearly, a gathering like this at this particular point in time was exactly what everyone needed. 

Our decision to make this a free event, meant that we could open attendance to many of our members and colleagues that likely would not have been able to participate under normal circumstances. I want to again thank our Major Partner, Crown Resorts, for their incredible generosity in supporting this event to the level they did. There was no way we could have achieved this outcome without them.

I also want to acknowledge and thank our Official Partners, Tourism Australia and Visit Victoria. Their support in so many ways allowed us to deliver a remarkable event with practical and timely content to guide the direction of our industry. The contributions of our Supporting Partners – 13cabs, VicSuper, City Tempo, Dann Event Hire, Gorgi Coghlan and The Provincial Ballarat, SDP Media and Slido – allowed us to make this event available to the broadest possible audience and was a true reflection of how this industry comes together to support each other through tough times.

It was a completely different format to what has been delivered previously at our forums and, from all accounts, the recipe was a good one. There was the right mix of information and content supported by workshops in the afternoon that delivered useful insights and great learnings that people could take back to apply in their businesses.

Importantly, VTIC launched its 2020/2021 State Budget Submission, delivering a blueprint for recovery and resilience for the industry. We know this is a tough budget year ahead and that finances are stretched by the current crises at both the State and Federal levels; but we also know this is no time to be timid about what the industry needs and our budget submission reflects that. 

It’s been a difficult lesson to learn, but the current events have clearly shown that tourism plays a vital role in the economic performance of Victoria. This budget submission makes the clear point that an investment in the tourism industry is an investment in the state’s recovery process.  

You can see a full version of VTIC’s Budget Submission here.  

There is no better time for our industry to be united as we prosecute the case for investment. Yesterday at the Forum, our Chair of VTIC, Matt McDonald, and the CEO of the Victorian Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Paul Guerra, launched an exciting new membership offer that recognises the challenges our industry is facing in the current environment of crises and instability.

Thanks to our strong alignment within the Victorian Chamber, from Sunday 1 March, VTIC is able to provide to industry a very special offer of free 12-month membership at our Essentials and In the Loop levels, and an additional $500 credit toward training and consulting services for our members at the Complete level and above. If you’re not a member, this is the perfect opportunity to add your voice to messages VTIC is delivering through its aggressive advocacy in the state and national arenas. If you’re already a valued member, this is the chance to really uplift in your engagement with the benefits and events that are available to you in driving better business outcomes for your future.  

Over the coming days we will be providing you with specific information tailored to your membership category to better outline how you can activate these important benefits. In the meantime, if you’d like more information, you can email us on info@vtic.com.au

Our future is stronger together and we look forward to adding influence and power to our already strong voice in partnership with you.