The Victorian Government has announced a $170 million regional tourism package to help build tourism infrastructure projects and increase visitor spending across Victoria.
The funding will help businesses within the sector improve visitor experience and is designed to create new jobs and benefit regional communities.
The main aspect is a $150 million Regional Tourism and Events Fund supporting new events, attractions and more accommodation for visitors. The fund includes:
- $70 million for Regional Events (previous examples include Kings of Leon in Mildura, Foo Fighters in Geelong, the Elvis exhibition at Bendigo Art Gallery)
- $60 million for Regional Tourism Infrastructure, supporting tourism businesses like wineries, breweries and distilleries to add offerings such as accommodation
- $10 million to Grow Food and Fibre Exports by assisting Victorian primary producers and encouraging more Australians and international markets to buy Victorian
- $5 million for Regional Tourism Industry Development to help deliver skills, workforce and capacity for regional tourism businesses
- $5 million for Regional Multicultural Festivals across regional Victoria such as Tet, Chinese New Year and Nyepi.
A further $20 million is allocated for regional tourism marketing, which is still subject to consultation and engagement with industry.
Another fund is also established to increase the supply of workers’ accommodation in regional Victoria by supporting tourism and hospitality businesses to attract and retain staff and reduce pressure on the rental market.
The $150 million Regional Worker Accommodation Fund will provide grants for projects that increase the supply of workers’ accommodation in regional Victoria.
Premier Daniel Andrews has said: “Our investment will continue to showcase everything that regional Victoria has to offer – creating new jobs and attracting more visitors from across Victoria, Australia and the world.”
It was recently revealed that Victoria’s visitor economy broke records, with visitor spend for the year ending March 2023 hitting $35 billion, surpassing the 2019 peak of $32.5 billion.