Home' Hotel Management : HM FEB 2017 Contents 1.3 million Chinese visitors alone spending more than AUD$9 billion and this is less
than one per cent of the potential 200 million traveller market in China that Australia
could be tapping into, especially with 2017 being declared the Australia-China Year of
Tourism. But, let ’s not forget the other prominent markets in the Asia-Pacific that are
experiencing double digit growth such as Singapore (15.7 per cent), Japan (21.7 per cent),
Malaysia (16.3 per cent), South Korea (28.3 per cent), India (11.3 per cent) and Hong
Kong (12.8 per cent). On the other side of the Pacific our US market is growing strongly
too (17.6 per cent). These are great numbers going into 2017 and there is no sign of them
letting up anytime soon.
More visitors is of course great news for accommodation providers. Tourism
Accommodation Australia (TAA) has reported that in the last year the number of hotel
rooms has rocketed through 100,000 and an additional 9,000 rooms will come online
over the next two years. More than 120 hotel projects in the pipeline will grow stock by
30 per cent over the next five years. The occupancy rate has increased from 71.81 per cent
to 72.45 per cent in the 12 months ending June 2016.
TTF has been a vocal advocate of the need for government to develop a future
economic strategy in partnership with industry that puts the tourism and transport sectors
at the heart of the Australian economy. With more Australians than ever before choosing
to experience the beauty and wonder of their island continent and millions of international
visitors landing on our shores that will increase pressure on us to expand and improve our
visitor infrastructure from airports and cruise terminals to accommodation and attractions.
This is a great challenge to have but one we need to meet with some urgency to ensure we
reap the full benefits of our booming visitor economy.
We need to see the Federal Government invest more of the AUD$1 billion it raises
each year through its holiday tax – the Passenger Movement Charge – into better
passenger facilitation services at our international airports and cruise terminals. If we
want to provide a positive border experience we need to invest in the latest biometric
technology, smart gates and other reforms that will reduce queuing and allow security
agencies to better target their resources towards people of interest.
Securing our workforce is going to only intensify in future years with a projected
shortfall of 123,000 skilled and unskilled workers in the sector by 2020. We need a
stronger partnership with government to encourage Australians to view the industry as
a provider of fulfilling career paths leading to a broad range of valuable skill sets in the
hospitality and tourism sectors.
Tourism will continue to have a bright future but we need to back the industry with the
right government policies and the investment to ensure that it can reach its full potential.
Looking back on 2016 you can’t help but feel it will be
remembered as a year of upset and tragedy. A year in
which globally beloved personalities left us one after
the other. A year that gave us Brexit, the never-ending
Australian Federal Election and President Donald Trump!
A year rocked by terrorism and acts of violence through
the Middle East, Europe and America with several acts
specifically targeting visitor hotspots and airports.
But a darkening mood abroad should not cast a
shadow over the reality that for the Australian visitor
economy it was actually a cracker of a year with record-
breaking results in both our domestic and international
markets. More Australians than ever are exploring their
own backyard with the number of overnight trips up 5
per cent to 89.4 million and spending also up 5 per cent
to AUD$59.8 billion. On the international front we’ve
broken through 8 million visitors for the first time, up
an impressive 11.5 per cent in just 12 months, and their
spending in our economy has reached AUD$38.8 billion,
up 11 per cent. On top of that we have seen the latest
economic figures that show the tourism sector has grown
a rate of 7.4 per cent in 2015-16 – that is more than
three times the growth of the total Australian economy
(2.3 per cent).
The outlook for 2017 is just as bright, if not even
brighter. The record breaking has only just begun for the
visitor economy. The collective spending of domestic and
international visitors will break through the AUD$100
billion milestone in the next round of survey reports
putting us well on the way to meeting the 2020 tourism
targets of overnight spending between AUD$115 and
AUD$140 billion by the end of the decade.
The Chinese market which has been growing at a
sustained 20 per cent annual rate will overtake New
Zealand and become our largest international visitor
source market sometime this year. That will be more than
Chief Executive Officer
Tourism & Transport Forum Australia (TTF)
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