Savage Cuts For Tourism In Marshall’s State Budget

Steven Marshall has unleashed savage cuts worth $24 million in coming years to the tourism budget, at a time when the sector is suffering the consequences of COVID-19 border closures and restrictions.

The budget papers reveal cuts to the tourism budget in each of the next four years of the forward estimates.
 

 

2020-21

2021-22

2022-23

2023-24

2024-25

Tourism

$96m

$92m

$88m

$75m

$72m


By contrast, the former Labor Government budgeted $113 million for tourism’s operations in the 2017-18 budget. 

Even the Liberals spent $111 million in 2019-20, before COVID-19.

The budget papers detail cuts to tourism marketing, with the total budget cut by nearly $10 million, from $42.4 million in 2020-21 to $33.1 million in 2021-22.

The domestic tourism marketing budget is being cut from $26.7 million in 2020-21 to $17.3 million in 2021-22. This is well below the pre-COVID budget of $19.6 million.

According to the SATC report released 30 June, the South Australian visitor economy is experiencing the most severe contraction on record, with total visitor expenditure falling from $8.1 billion in 2019 to $4.4 billion in the year ending March 2021 – down a whopping $3.7 billion.

From March 2020 to March 2021:
•    Overnight domestic trips fell by 30%
•    Total domestic expenditure fell by 35%
•    Day trips expenditure fell by 29%

Quotes attributable to Shadow Minister for Tourism Zoe Bettison

The Liberals continue to turn their backs on our tourism industry – a sector which is largely mum and dad family businesses.

It is beyond belief the Liberals would cut the tourism budget in each of the next four years, when the tourism industry is going to need all the help it can get to recover from the COVID-19 pandemic.

As we have seen in recent weeks, the impact of sudden border closures is continuing to devastate tourism operators who are continuing to lose bookings.