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A little help please Julia

Honestly, I would rather eat a jar of Marmite than talk about politics so believe me when I say, this isn’t a political rant…

… but I can’t help noticing how much emphasis there is at the moment on Australia being more innovative in tourism without seeing any kind of help from the Government for small business owners to deliver it.

I think it’s fair to say we in tourism are struggling. Sure, some sectors are faring better than others, but (at the risk of sounding like a broken record) the Aussie dollar is hurting us severely. Thanks Captain Obvious.

So what do we do now?

Our colleagues up in Queensland are doing their best to make sure people aren’t getting the wrong idea about the condition of their state. Yep, good start.

Tourism Australia is doing its bit with the marketing campaigns. As they always have done, it’s kind of their job.

We’re doing promotions, competitions, PR, press junkets, we even got Oprah Winfrey to sing our praises and still, we’re hurting.

What more can we do?

The ball is in the Government’s court. The tourism industry has seen its share of Gross Domestic Product fall every year, from 4.1 per cent in 2003/04 to 3.6 per cent in 2007/08 (Australian Bureau of Statistics).

The Government must stimulate our industry through an innovation grant for tourism operators based on annual revenue. A stimulus package which businesses must spend on improving their product.

Whether it’s a hostel installing wi-fi or powerpoints in their lockers, a tour operator developing a Facebook application, a bungy jumping company live-streaming their customer’s jumps on the internet, we need to give our customers something else to talk about rather than how bloody expensive a beer is.

And while they’re at it, how about cutting back on the red tape preventing some of these businesses from developing and improving the overall ‘Product Australia’?

Or developing Federal legislation for things like transport regulation, payroll tax or stamp duty? Just to make life a little easier in the meantime.

Come on Julia, send us a little love.

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  1. scotty
    10 May 11
    11:04 am
  2. I like the way you think, Alice (despite your footy affiliations….).

    Investment in tourism from ANYONE would be a pleasant change at the mo…we`re open to all suggestions…..

    Interestingly enough, the United Arab Emirates have offered to pay for what should be a standard bit of tropical infrastructure: $30 million towards communal cyclone shelters from Rocky North to Weipa. Premier Anna Bligh will match the $30 million,saying this will allow what would have taken 20 years to be achieved in 2……lucky us!!!!

    Also, this high dollar is apparently forcing Coca Cola Amatil to relocate it`s canning facility offshore,with more companies mumbling about doing similar: this would only be considered if the Pacific Peso`s arc was expected to be a long-term thing….bugger!

    The film industry in Oz is also in dire straights, with no major foreign movies being made here since Wolverine in `08 and large amounts of expensive equipment and experienced employees remaining idle or leaving overseas. Culprit? The A$ again,making us un-competitive by comparison.

    As for red tape costs, Just wait until Wild Rivers is enacted in the Cape: for a small business to produce a working business management plan and achieve all the permits is projected to cost over $1 million and take well over 12 months to access.

    I reckon Gaddafi would be keen to fund some changes here in return for asylum:lets hit him up!

  3. Unknown
    14 May 11
    8:08 pm
  4. I like this idea! The cash injection to the operators and hostel owners would be a huge welcome to many operators in the industry, especially those in Mission Beach area!

  5. Stumpy
    26 May 11
    1:05 pm
  6. I like marmite. Actually I want to open a New Zealand company just so I can call it that.

  7. Anonymous
    31 May 11
    9:07 am
  8. Martin Ferguson said in 2010:
    “Tourism is very much part of Australia’s future and will be the lifeblood of many local communities,” Ferguson said.
    “The tourism industry of Australia has contributed AUD41 billion to the national economy and employs nearly half a million Australians”
    Yet it does seem he is a tad preoccupied with mining. Odd when his Government is also so concerned about our carbon footprint.
    Could their focus be purely on getting the GDP balanced with mining taxes and thus get re-elected.
    We need a focused Minister because operators can bring out any old new wiz gag it won’t matter till we get people travelling. Open up visa restrictions, work on the dollar, promote work visas, help inbound airlines, Government work with industry, flexibility in employing, we do need our Government to put more energy into our industry rather, the emphasis on thousands of individual companies telling us to pick up our game

  9. scotty
    31 May 11
    9:30 am
  10. Well said, anonymous!!! You should try and get that printed in The Age, Herald-Sun, Courier Mail, The Australian, Truth, Penthouse……this is what our leaders need to wake up to.

    I`d buy you a beer but I dunno who you are, so, your shout!

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