Tourism Industry Development Minister Kate Jones today announced the Palaszczuk Government would begin direct negotiations with The Star to fast track new tourism infrastructure on the Gold Coast.
Ms Jones said The Star was today issued terms for negotiation with the government to contractualise the delivery of their master plan for the Gold Coast and fast-track new tourism infrastructure.
“Our government has always said we want to work with the private sector to deliver more investment and more jobs for the Gold Coast,” she said.
“We entered into a market process to deliver more tourism infrastructure for the Gold Coast.
“Out of that process, Star have made it clear that they are keen to contractualise their investment in the Gold Coast.
“By having a contract with the Star, we can guarantee that tourism infrastructure that is promised will be delivered.”
Today’s announcement coincides with the release of a community consultation report which calls for new hotels, attractions and convention space to entice more tourists to the Gold Coast.
“Gold Coasters understand that to attract more tourists and grow the local economy, the city needs more tourism infrastructure,” Ms Jones said.
Gold Coast Tourism Advisory Panel chair John Witheriff said the Gold Coast needed new tourism investment to ensure the city kept up with demand.
“Our consultation shows very clearly – new infrastructure is crucial when it comes to growing the Gold Coast tourism industry in the future,” he said.
“If the Gold Coast is to compete with the likes of Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane and even Cairns in years to come, private sector investment in tourism infrastructure like this will be very important.
“Locals are supportive. For the most part, they want to see more private sector investment in their city.”
Ms Jones said the Gold Coast Tourism Advisory Panel found the majority of Gold Coasters were supportive of, or had no concerns about a new casino provided it was delivered as part of an integrated resort.
“However, there was strong feedback that Gold Coasters were not supportive of a new casino being built on public land,” she said.
“Locals expect that another operator would have to acquire their own site.”
Ms Jones thanked John Witheriff and other members of the Panel for their hard work.
“This report has followed months of thorough community consultation from John and the Gold Coast Tourism Advisory Panel,” she said.
“From day one, I’ve assured locals that I would listen to them – not dictate terms from Brisbane.
“Through this process, we’ve heard loud and clear that Gold Coasters want us to deliver new tourism infrastructure that creates jobs, so that’s what we’re doing.”