“This Budget secures the continued delivery of new initiatives which have seen NSW lead Australia in visitor numbers, visitor nights and visitor expenditure, and will enable us to deliver new events and sustained growth in the years to come,” Mr Ayres said.
“The NSW Government’s tourism and major events agency, Destination NSW, will administer the $176 million in 2015-16 to support tourism, major events and business events.
“This includes $93 million to secure major arts, entertainment and sports events and $51 million to grow tourism across the State.”
The 2015-16 budget allocation incorporates the additional $127 million over four years that the NSW Government earmarked for the sector as part of its election commitments, with events a clear catalyst for boosting overnight visitation.
The additional funding represents an extra $73 million over the next four years to embed Sydney as the number one destination for major events in Australia, including $22 million to bring more world class events to Western Sydney
The additional funding will also see Regional NSW benefit from an additional $40 million over four years to grow tourism as well as $9 million to target overseas visitors from the priority international markets identified in the Visitor Economy Industry Action Plan.
Tourism and major events are key to sustaining and growing the NSW economy. In the year ending September 2014, the visitor economy was worth $28 billion to the NSW economy and was a source of 159,000 jobs.
“This budget uplift increases the State’s ability to deliver innovative tourism promotions and secure world class events for NSW to drive results that contribute to the Government’s goal of doubling overnight visitor expenditure in NSW by 2020,”
Mr Ayres said.