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Regional Queensland a top tourist destination.



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REGIONAL QUEENSLAND A TOP TOURIST DESTINATION 21 September 2000

       

Wednesday, 20 September 2000         00/424 

REGIONAL QUEENSLAND A TOP TOURIST DESTINATION 

Latest figures released by Federal Minister for Sport and Tourism, Jackie Kelly, revealed the Gold Coast and Tropical North Queensland were favourite destinations of international visitors to Australia during 1999.  

The 1999 International Visitor Survey published by the Bureau of Tourism Research shows the Gold Coast attracted 21.4 per cent of international visitors, while 18.4 per cent of international visitors went to Tropical North Queensland. 

These two regions were ranked number three and four respectively in the top 20 regions visited in Australia behind Sydney and Melbourne. Brisbane was number five attracting 17.2 per cent of visitors, the Sunshine Coast number 10 attracting 4.9 per cent, the followed by the Whitsunday Islands with 4.8 per cent. 

In total, Queensland received 48 per cent of international visitors, while the overall number of visitors to Australia increased by 7 per cent during 1999. 

Minister Kelly said the results showed the importance of tourism to regional Australia. 

"This highlights that regional areas can and do attract international tourists. Tourism is a booming industry and has a key role to play in revitalising regional economies." 

Japan was the largest source of international visitors to Australia (662 500), followed by New Zealand (660 800), the United Kingdom (508 900) and the USA (392 500).

The Gold Coast attracted 50 per cent of Japanese visitors, 20 per cent of New Zealand visitors, 10 per cent of UK visitors and 9 per cent of visitors from the USA. Tropical North Queensland attracted 25 per cent of Japanese visitors, 5 per cent of New Zealand visitors, 29 per cent of UK visitors and 27 per cent of visitors

from the USA. 

Minister Kelly said the results were positive for the Australian tourism industry. 

"The continued recovery of the Asian markets, the exceptional value of Australian holidays and the increased coverage of Australia before the Olympics have all contributed to the increases in international visitor arrivals, increased spending and the number of nights spent here," Minister Kelly said. 

The International Visitors in Australia 1999 report is available from the Bureau of Tourism Research by phoning (02) 6213 6967. 

Media inquiries: Sam Spurrett  Technical inquiries: Peter Robins

CMR497-00 0417033876      BTR

                                                                   02 6213 7125

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