Joint media release

  • Senator the Hon Simon Birmingham, Minister for Trade, Tourism and Investment
  • Senator the Hon Jonathon Duniam, Assistant Minister for Regional Tourism
09 December 2019

Australia’s Tourism sector continues to provide a major boost to regional Australia, according to the new data released today by the Morrison Government.

Commissioned by Tourism Research Australia, the latest Regional Tourism Satellite Accounts data shows the economic value of tourism in Regional Australia grew 6.4 per cent to $22 billion in 2017-18.

Federal Tourism Minister Simon Birmingham welcomed the report and said it confirmed the ongoing importance and economic impact of tourism to our regions.

“With 43 cents of every tourism dollar now spent in the regions, tourism is such an important driver of many regional economies across Australia,” Minister Birmingham said.

“Over 2.8 million international travellers now visit regional Australia each year, and whilst we want to continue to grow this number, we also need focus on getting these tourists to spend more and stay longer.

“We need to continue to shine the spotlight on the unique experiences and attractions on offer across regional Australia, and that’s why 80 percent of Tourism Australia’s current campaigns, feature tourism experiences outside of our capital cities.

“Enticing travellers to venture beyond our major cities remains a major focus of our campaign activity, and this puts regional Australia in a prime position to continue to capitalise on the growth we are currently seeing within our tourism industry.”

Assistant Minister Duniam said the report showed over 305,000 regional Australians were now in tourism jobs — more than 8 per cent of the regional workforce.

“Tourism is such a major job creator for regional communities with one in nine Australians working in regional Australia, employed in our tourism industry,” Assistant Minister Duniam said.

“Getting international travellers to travel further than our country’s major gateways and into states such as Tasmania and Northern Territory is so critical for these economies and for jobs.

“It’s exactly why regional tourism will be the centrepiece of the Tourism 2030 Plan, as we aim to expand on this growth and unlock the full potential of our regions.”

The full Regional Tourism Satellite Accounts, 2017-18 report is available at: