The Tourism Satellite Accounts for 2017-18 highlight the visitor economy as one of Australia’s strongest performers, defying the downward trend of many other parts of the national economy, the Australian Chamber – Tourism, the peak body representing national tourism groups, said today.
“Tourism is one of Australia’s super growth industries and the Tourism Satellite Accounts released today reflect this in spades”, Executive Chair of Australian Chamber-Tourism, John Hart, said.
- The tourism sector contributed over $57.3 billion or more than 3.1 percent to Australia’s GDP in 2017-18.
- Tourism Consumption increased by 6.7 percent to $143.4 billion with 74% from domestic consumption.
- International Tourism, which is tourism exports, increased by 7.3 percent to $37.4 billion.
- Employment in Tourism increased by 4.6% to 646,000 employed persons.
“With 28,400 additional employees added in 2017-18, one in nineteen people in Australia are now directly employed in the domestic and international tourism sectors, making up 5.2 percent of Australia’s workforce,” Mr Hart said.
“The demand for labour and skills is also growing at a rapid pace with an additional 150,000 new jobs expected to be created within the next 10 years. The sector faces severe shortages of skilled people to provide the levels of service that both domestic and international visitors have come to expect.
“We need a nationally agreed strategy for training and retention to ensure skilled Australians are able to fill career opportunities in the visitor economy.
“We also need to promote the wide range of long-term careers available in the tourism sector to students and career planners, and combat negative perceptions of the sector.”
Mr Hart noted the Australian Chamber-Tourism’s labour and skills policy asks from the next Federal Government:
- Reinstate the Tourism Labour Force Survey.
- Allocate $10 million to develop and implement a strategy to encourage career pathways in the visitor economy.
“We urge both major parties to commit to developing the tourism workforce to ensure the sector remains strong, well into the future,” Mr Hart said.