Premier of Western Australia (WA), Mark McGowan, has announced a new tourism recovery package that will see the State’s official convention bureau, Business Events Perth (BE Perth), receive AUD$15m (US$11m) in funding. The aim is to assist the attraction of lucrative business events to WA, which will help to support the state’s business event, hotel and hospitality industry.
Speaking at the WA State of the State event, 1 December, Premier McGowan announced the $185m Reconnect WA funding package, a multifaceted package that targets tourists, skilled workers, international students and events.
Premier McGowan said: “Our Reconnect WA package aims to leverage what we have achieved in managing the pandemic by offering a safe and vibrant place to visit, work or invest in”.
The package also includes a $65m aviation fund directed towards re-establishing international and interstate flight routes that were disrupted by the pandemic, as well as targeting new routes including Germany, India, China and Vietnam.
Bradley Woods, chair of BE Perth, stated: “In 2019, BE Perth generated $153m in confirmed business events with $5.3m in funding, which is an ROI of 1:29, so we expect that this new funding from the WA State Government will generate significant economic returns for Western Australia and also support Perth’s CBD hotels which have borne the brunt of the pandemic.
“With business event delegates spending up to five times more than their leisure counterparts and almost two-thirds of delegates choosing to attend a conference in order to extend their trip to take a holiday, the business events sector has a vital role to play in the ongoing recovery of WA’s overall tourism industry.”
Gareth Martin, CEO of BE Perth, commented: “Through the funding of the State Government over the last 15 months, BE Perth has directly supported over 350 local events while securing a pipeline of national and international business events for future years.”
Full details of the package are to come shortly. To find out more, see Premier Mark McGowan’s media release here.