Australian Tourism Exchange gets $6.5m boost as part of National Bushfire Recovery Fund

Christian Fleetwood

Christian Fleetwood

The federal government is rolling out $76 million for the recovery of Australia’s tourism industry.

As part of the funding dedicated to the recovery of tourism in Australia, which forms part of the $2 billion National Bushfire Recovery Fund, the Australian Tourism Exchange (ATE) will receive a $6.5 million boost.

A regional tourism events initiative will also be rolled out, to the tune of $10 million.

ATE brings together Australian tourism businesses, and tourism wholesalers and retailers from around the world through a combination of scheduled business appointments and networking events.

The event, this year hosted in Melbourne, provides international travel buyers with the opportunity to experience Australia’s tourism offering first-hand through pre- and post-event familiarisations.

ATE delivers between $5.5 billion and $8.5 billion in international sales to Australia’s tourism industry across 30 countries.

Australia is facing a tourism crisis as a result of bushfires and their perception by travellers internationally. The Australian Tourism Export Council (ATEC) said bookings to Australia have dropped 10 to 20 per cent, costing the country at least $45 billion by the end of the year, as reported by The Nibbler’s sister publication, Travel Weekly.  

What can Meetings and Events Australia members do to help?

Meetings and Events Australia (MEA) has revealed it has been asked to reach out to its international networks and stakeholders to convey that Australia is “open for business” to assist in the recovery of communities affected by bushfire.

The MICE industry body has also provided tips on how you can help.

On the home front, MEA recommends its members assist by encouraging “people to holiday in regional Australia”, particularly in regions directly impacted.

MEA added that the MICE industry can also assist communities battling drought, some of which were later hit by fires.

“Event organisers should think about taking events regional,” the industry body said. “MEA is already doing this with our annual flagship event Evolve being held in the Hunter Valley in May.”

MEA also added that, given the business events industry is “high-yielding”, off-peak events that occur during the working week can add to communities’ usual weekend tourist trade.

“The road to recovery will be long and the Australia brand has been damaged,” the industry body said.

“However, MEA is committed to working with government and other industry groups to focus on re-generating and re-building confidence in this fabulous country and in particular, the vibrant events industry of which we are all so very proud.”

Get Global calls on local communities affected by bushfire to have a presence at event

The organisers of Get Global are extending an opportunity to bureaux or local council representatives affected by bushfires to have a presence on the show floor at Get Global 2020.

Although Get Global is an outbound trade show, as a one-off, the event’s organisers are offering five fire-affected destinations the chance to be part of the show.

“Get Global co-founders Gary Bender and Donna Kessler understand how our regional areas are suffering due to the devasting impact of the recent bush fires and value the importance of the business tourism market to the affected areas,” the event’s organisers said in a statement.

This initiative gives direct access to leading event, meetings and conference organisers, which enables them to support all businesses from their region by providing updates and reassuring the MICE buyer community that it’s business as usual.

Get Global said it is “confident” this initiative will help strengthen business tourism activity in fire affected regions as they seek to redevelop their local tourism base.

Destinations and bureaux wishing to take up the offer or find out more can contact