The Victorian tourism industry has today welcomed the passing of the National Parks Amendment Bill 2013 which will allow private sector investment in appropriate tourism infrastructure in national parks, and therefore make the state’s natural assets more accessible for all to enjoy.
Victoria Tourism Industry Council (VTIC) Chief Executive Dianne Smith says, “We congratulate the Victorian Government on the passing of the legislation. This will add to the depth and quality of visitor experiences available in Victoria. Locals and visitors want nature-based experiences, and this will allow everyone to enjoy a great variety of these.
“This represents great progress for Victoria’s tourism industry and will bring us into line with many other Australian states and territories.
“By allowing appropriate investment, our national parks will be more accessible for locals and visitors to appreciate the natural beauty that Victoria has to offer, and ease the economic burden currently on government to maintain and develop these places.
“We particularly acknowledge the leadership of the Minister for Tourism and Major Events, Louise Asher in making these changes which will smooth the way for Victoria’s $19 billion tourism industry to continue to thrive.”
The legislation allows private investment in appropriate and sustainable tourism infrastructure in Victoria’s national parks and extend the lease period for national park land up to 99 years. Development would be governed by stringent guidelines.