07 Oct 2020

Industry Update - Federal Budget and what it means for South Australian tourism

Good afternoon,

There have been several announcements leading into last night’s handing down of the 2020-21 Federal Budget, with funding allocated to regional tourism and infrastructure projects, and to stimulating business investment and apprenticeships.

With 40,500 South Australians directly employed in the tourism industry – one of the hardest hit in the COVID-19 pandemic – this year’s Budget means a lot for many businesses and families in our state.

While there is a lot to digest, see below a summary of what it means for South Australian tourism:

  • Building Better Regions Fund – $200 million for a new round of the Building Better Regions Fund, which includes $100 million dedicated to tourism-related infrastructure.

  • Regional Tourism Recovery – $50 million to assist businesses in regions heavily reliant on international tourism. Kangaroo Island is among 10 regions across Australia to share in this package.

  • Business travel boost – $50 million to help restart business events and travel by encouraging businesses to attend events, conferences and trade exhibitions. 

  • Tourism Australia domestic marketing boost – $231.6 million for Tourism Australia in 2020-21 to ramp up domestic marketing activities to encourage Australians to travel locally, as well as to get ready to attract international visitors as soon as the time is right.

  • Parks and heritage – $319 million for Australia’s parks and heritage areas to enhance the visitor experience at these iconic sites, whilst also providing an economic boost through job creation.

  • ​​​​​​​​​Infrastructure investment – $625 million allocated to get priority projects moving, including $100 million for the Strzelecki Track upgrade and $12 million for the Victor Harbor Road upgrade.

In other news for South Australian businesses, there is also several new tax incentives, including a temporary extension of the instant asset write-off that will allow businesses up to $5 billion to fully write-off new assets. Businesses will also get temporary loss carry-back measures, which means they can offset losses incurred until June 2022 against profits made in or after 2018-19.

It was also pleasing to see the JobMaker plan outlines opportunities to help drive and sustain our state’s economic recovery. We hope this will get young people into work quickly, and create more confidence in rebuilding our sector, particularly in regional areas where we have heard staffing is an issue. As we know, tourism employs one in every 12 Australian workers, so we are determined to work together to ensure our South Australian sector is ready and able to bounce-back to our pre-COVID record visitor economy.

We now look ahead with interest at the SA State Budget 2020-21, which will be handed down on Tuesday, 10 November.

Yours sincerely,

Rodney Harrex
Chief executive

See the full Industry Update - 7 October 2020 here.