Regional Tourism Fund to Kickstart Local Businesses and Gippsland Economy

Regional Tourism Fund to Kickstart Local Businesses and Gippsland Economy

Our local community here in Gippsland have been hit hard by drought, bushfire and now the coronavirus pandemic.

Travel bans put in place to stop the spread of COVID-19 meant visitation to country Victoria was smashed overnight.

If we do not take bold steps now to restore our local tourism sector, our regional tourism businesses – which employ an estimated 86,000 Victorians – will never recover.

Together with the Liberal Nationals, I am calling for a dedicated $200 million Regional Tourism Fund to be immediately established by the Andrews Labor Government to support our country communities and bring visitors back to regional Victoria.

With an aim to return the tourism sector to June 2019 bed night accommodation levels by June 2021, this Fund should provide targeted support to tourism in different regions to:

  • assist operators to get back on their feet,
  • promote Victorian tourism destinations, and
  • upgrade tourism related infrastructure.

The call is part of the Liberal Nationals’ plan to get Victorians back to work and back in business.

Last year the Andrews Government spent more than $100 million on self-promotional advertising, such as its multi-million dollar ‘Big Build’ campaign. All Andrews Government self-promotional advertising must be immediately scrapped and redirected into promoting regional Victorian tourism.

The Andrews Government should also fast-track the completion of local tourism projects and upgrade nature-based facilities to get people back to Gippsland.

Comments attributable to Gary Blackwood;

“With restrictions beginning to be eased, now is the time to take bold action to restore confidence and jobs to regional economies like ours here in Gippsland.

“Together with the Liberal Nationals, I am proposing a $200 million Regional Tourism Fund to encourage visitors to come to country Victorian communities and help businesses get back on their feet.

“The many people in our community who rely on tourism to pay the bills and put food on the table are counting on the Andrews Government to get them back to work and back in business.”


Gary Blackwood MP
State Member for Narracan
3/24 Mason Street

Ph: 5623 1960
Fax: 5623 4506



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