Tuesday, 1 November 2016
NORTHERN Tablelands MP Adam Marshall said today that successful events across the electorate were helping drive regional tourism in NSW with significant recent growth recorded.
“Tourism is going from strength to strength in country NSW with the highest absolute growth in visitors recorded across regional Australia, up by 1.2 million visitors and 4.5 million nights,” Mr Marshall said.
“A total of 20.4 million visitors, an increase of 6.4 per cent of visitors made the choice to spend time in the stellar beauty and unique attractions of our regions, and further work to turbo-charge regional tourism will see this trend continue.
“The Northern Tablelands has been a great part of that growth with events including the Evocities MTB Series in Armidale last weekend and Opera in the Paddock in April in Inverell and Armidale attracting wide audiences.
“And we have just seen that clearly demonstrated in Armidale with the latest Day on the Green musical event; it attracts thousands of visitors here from outside our region, particularly from inland and coastal destinations, as well as further afield.
“And we know the value of sporting events to this region too, especially with junior sport when parents, siblings and other family members follow their children to compete.”
Mr Marshall said the NSW Government’s $43 million investment across the next four years will revolutionise the way regional and rural areas attract visitors, including the creation of dedicated Destination Networks across NSW.
“We’ve also expanded the Regional Flagship Events Program with a total of $6 million in funding over four years, and a new Regional Tourism Fund for marketing and product development is set to launch soon,” Mr Marshall said.
“Through Destination NSW we are driving visitation and support for the regions through a robust calendar of events, marketing regional destinations across Australia and the world and establishing industry partnerships with the likes of airlines and accommodation providers.”
Minister for Trade, Tourism and Major Events Stuart Ayres said there had been an exciting response to the call for applications to the Board positions for the Destination Networks with more than 600 received.
“The overwhelming response from industry is a real vote of confidence that NSW needs this new tourism structure and appointments are on track to be complete by the end of this year,” Mr Ayres said.