Australian Tourism Investment Guide


The Australian tourism industry encompasses almost 280,000 enterprises across a range of sectors including short-term accommodation, luxury resorts, theme parks, casinos, nature retreats, travel agents, transport companies and retail and education providers.

Tourism is Australia’s largest services export, contributing A$35 billion to GDP.

A wealth of tourism investment opportunities

Australia is set apart by its vast landscapes and nature-based tourism offerings, indigenous culture and heritage,  sophisticated cities and regions, and a friendly, tolerant and culturally diverse population. Supported by highly efficient and inter-connected tourism infrastructure, Australia offers investment opportunities across a wide range of tourism products and facilities.

Strategic location in the world’s strongest performing tourism region

Australia’s proximity to expanding Asian markets presents significant tourism growth and investment opportunities. Asia is expected to contribute more than half of the projected growth in international visitation to Australia over the next decade and the Australian market is expected to sustain growth from New Zealand, the United States, the United Kingdom and Europe.

Strong domestic market

Australians are enthusiastic holiday-makers in their own country, taking about 70 million overnight trips and spending A$43 billion within Australia each year.  Domestic tourism spend continues to underpin the tourism sector, accounting for 62 per cent of total tourism consumption.

Top performing accommodation sector

Rising demand for capital city accommodation has seen occupancy rates in Australia rise higher than in any other OECD country.  Hotel sector revenue per available room (RevPAR) is strong and Australian hotel sector average annual returns outperformed other property sectors by 80 per cent in 2011.

Expanding international aviation capacity

Australia is located in close proximity to the world’s largest aviation market. Aviation is expected to remain a positive factor for Australian tourism, with forecasts of stronger loads and yields on Australian routes.  By 2020, airline capacity in Australia is predicted to increase by 50 per cent.

A secure and stable environment to do business

Australia’s economy continues to perform solidly, building upon 20 consecutive years of growth. For two consecutive years, Australia has ranked as the world’s second most resilient economy.  At the beginning of 2012, Australia was one of only 14 countries to retain a Triple-A long-term foreign currency credit rating for sovereign bonds.

Priority government support for tourism investment

The Australian Government is supporting the growth of tourism investment in Australia under a new policy direction. Tourism 2020 is a joint industry-government strategy to greatly increase Australia’s overnight visitor expenditure to between A$115 billion and A$140 billion by 2020.

Open foreign investment regime

Australia welcomes foreign investment and recognises its contribution to the overall development of Australia – including Australia’s tourism industry.

Tourism industry highlights

  • By the year 2020, domestic visitor nights are expected to grow by 0.3 per cent per annum, international visitor arrivals by 3.6 per cent per annum, and tourism consumption by 1.2 per cent per annum.
  • In 2011, the Asian market contributed A$9.6 billion, representing 52 per cent of total international visitor spend.
  • China is Australia’s highest yielding inbound market. Expenditure is expected to more than double by 2020, and visitor numbers are expected to grow by 7.2 per cent.
  • India, Australia’s tenth most valuable market in 2011, is expected to be Australia’s fifth most valuable market by 2020, contributing between A$1.9  and A$2.3 billion.
  • Australia’s airline capacity is predicted to increase by 50 per cent by 2020.
  • Demand for accommodation currently outweighs supply.  Demand for accommodation is expected to grow by 1.5 per cent per annum through to 2020.
  • Australia is regularly rated as one of the most desired tourism destinations in the world – ‘the place the world dreams of visiting’ (FutureBrand, 2010).
  • The Tourism Australia Facebook page has recorded 2.5 million worldwide fans, making it the most popular tourism destination page in the world.
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