Businesses in Gascoyne, Pilbara Get $837K for Eclipse Prep

  • WA Government helping local businesses prepare for 2023 Total Solar Eclipse
  • 40 businesses to receive grants totalling more than $837,400
  • Thousands of visitors expected to travel to the Ningaloo region for the event 

Local Gascoyne and Pilbara businesses preparing for the 2023 Total Solar Eclipse (TSE) will receive grants totalling more than $837,400 from the Western Australian Government.

Forty businesses have successfully applied for a grant through the TSE round of the Local Capability Fund (LCF).

Most of the businesses are from the tourism and hospitality sectors and in the Ningaloo region, which includes the towns of Carnarvon, Coral Bay, Exmouth and Onslow.

Announced by the WA Government in August 2022, the TSE round of the LCF was set up to help small to medium-sized businesses in the Gascoyne and Pilbara get ready for the increase in customers generated by the 2023 Total Solar Eclipse.

Sixty local businesses attended information sessions held in Carnarvon, Coral Bay, Exmouth and Onslow; delivered by the Department of Jobs, Tourism, Science and Innovation to promote the round.

Applicants were able to apply for grants of 75 per cent of costs, up to a maximum of $25,000.

The grants will be used to procure planning and business advice, improve internal business systems, train employees, acquire new equipment or machinery, and support specific operational costs.

Thousands of international and domestic visitors are expected to travel to the Ningaloo region to witness the sun, moon and Earth align at 11:27 am on 20 April 2023.

Exmouth will experience a 100 per cent solar eclipse, Onslow and Coral Bay will experience 99 per cent darkness, while Carnarvon will be about 95 per cent.

In addition to the TSE round of the LCF, the WA Government has committed $21.1 million to fund a range of upgrades that will help ensure the region is ready for a significant increase in visitors.

Upgrades include improvements to the region’s roads, marine infrastructure, telecommunication networks and local facilities.

As stated by State Development, Jobs and Trade and Tourism Minister Roger Cook:

“At 11:27 am on 20 April 2023; the Ningaloo region will be one of the only places on Earth you will be able to see a Total Solar Eclipse.

“The WA Government is helping to make sure local communities and businesses are prepared for the thousands of visitors the event is expected to attract to the region.

“Through the TSE round of the Local Capability Fund, 40 Gascoyne and Pilbara businesses have been approved to receive direct funding that they will use to practically prepare for an influx of customers in April and continue to support their business into the future.

“We want to see the 2023 Total Solar Eclipse leave a lasting legacy for the growing tourist centres in the Ningaloo region.”

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