Outback tourism needs urgent Government support

22 Apr 2015 4:11 PMJann Stuckey Outback tourism needs urgent Government support

The Queensland Opposition is calling on the Palaszczuk Government to show its support for drought-ravaged Outback Queensland by launching a dedicated tourism campaign.

Shadow Minister for Tourism, Jann Stuckey MP said farmers and graziers have been doing it tough for several years now which is also having an impact on the small businesses in these towns.

“Last week, Opposition Leader Lawrence Springborg visited the Longreach Shire to provide support to drought-stricken communities and received feedback from businesses that they were ready with open arms to have visitors come and enjoy the outback experience,” Ms Stuckey said.

“While funds to get shovel-ready projects is also critical to drive the local economy and generate jobs for these areas doing it tough, more can be done to boost tourism opportunities.

“The Premier must recognise the critical lifeline that tourism brings to so many of our towns and we are calling on her to invest funds for a tourism campaign to promote the Outback and the unlimited experiences these destinations offer.”

Ms Stuckey said Tourism and Transport Forum figures indicate the tourism industry employees around 7,000 people in the Outback with some 4,000 tourism-related businesses.

“During Autumn, Winter and Spring places like Longreach, Winton, Bedourie, Birdsville and Quilpie have wonderful and unique tourism opportunities that should be promoted,” she said.

“Tourists discover not only the natural beauty of an unknown landscape but the wonderful welcoming nature of people who know how to create a memorable experience.

“Visitors can immerse themselves in activities distinctive to the bush – from camp drafting, rodeos, country music festivals, eating mouth-watering home-cooked treats, sing along to bush ballads by a camp fire or simply marvel in the truly amazing landscape, and its equally amazing flora and fauna.”

Ms Stuckey said the drought is having a terrible impact on these communities and we are calling on the State Government to provide a swift response by investing in a dedicated Outback tourism campaign.

“Whilst Governments cannot affect weather patterns they can implement rapid action through programs that will entice interstate and intrastate visitors to ‘Go West’,” she said.

“Under the LNP Government significant weather events triggered immediate spontaneous tourism campaigns to promote Queensland destinations.

“Now is the time for this Government to act for the future of our state‘s regions.”

[Ends] 22 April 2015

Media contact: Currumbin Electorate Office 5598 1387