Queensland has welcomed more than two million international visitors in the year to March 2014, according to new figures released today.
Minister for Tourism Jann Stuckey said Tourism Research Australia’s latest International Visitor Survey revealed international visitors spent almost $4 billion on travel to Queensland, delivering on the Newman Government’s promise to grow tourism as one of the four pillars of the economy.
“International holidaymakers increased their travel and the amount spent on trips to Queensland by three per cent compared with the year prior,” Ms Stuckey said.
“This government has a strong plan to grow the Queensland tourism industry, so it’s encouraging to see these numbers continue to increase.
“Ten of the state’s top international visitor markets increased their travel to Queensland with strong double-digit growth recorded from India (up 33 per cent), China (up 11 per cent), Hong Kong (up 16 per cent) and Taiwan (up 10 per cent).
“China remains Queensland’s fastest growing and largest international market by visitor expenditure, with the state welcoming 305,000 Chinese visitors who spent $601 million on trips to Queensland, increases of 11 and 17 per cent respectively.
“The number of visitors from the United Kingdom grew seven percent to 213,000 and those who came also spent more, up 13 per cent to $432 million.
“These results prove the Queensland Government’s investment in tourism is paying off, after Labor ignored the sector for so many years.”
Ms Stuckey said international visitors had dispersed throughout the state in the year to March with a number of destinations benefiting from the increase in international holiday travel.
“The Gold Coast had Queensland’s highest increase of total international travel (up 7 per cent) boosted by a 10 per cent increase in holidaymakers,” she said.
“International travellers to the Gold Coast stayed longer with international visitor nights increasing 14 per cent to 8.5 million and spent more, up 12 per cent or an additional $105 million for the region’s tourism industry.
“The Whitsundays welcomed a four per cent increase in international travel in the year to March, the result of more holidaymakers and Chinese travellers.
“Tropical North Queensland’s popularity amongst international holidaymakers continued to grow three per cent to 641,000.
“The Sunshine Coast was a key beneficiary of international visitor spending in Queensland with international travellers contributing an additional $33 million – an increase of 19 per cent on the previous year, the result of travellers staying longer in the region with nights up eight per cent.”
Ms Stuckey said the Newman Government’s 20-year plan for tourism, Destination Success, would continue to build on this momentum, ensuring a strong and prosperous tourism industry for Queensland.