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USA and China lead Queensland tourism growth

Strong growth from the USA and China has underpinned a record $5 billion year for Queensland’s international tourism market, Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk announced today.

Leading a trade and investment drive in the United States, Premier Palaszczuk said the USA had recorded 29% growth in visitor expenditure to $384 million in the latest Tourism Research Australia figures.

“In the year to March 2016, international visitor expenditure to Queensland reached more than $5 billion for the first time,” Ms Palaszczuk said.

“Markets like the United States continue to drive tourism growth and that’s why I am beating the drum for Queensland during my US trade and investment mission.

“The number of visitors from the US increased by 18% to 208,000.”

Tourism Minister Kate Jones said China had become Queensland’s largest international tourism market.

“China has overtaken New Zealand as the largest source of international tourists for the first time,” Ms Jones said.

“We saw 442,000 Chinese travellers coming to Queensland for the period ended March 2016, also an increase of 29%.

“While China has recorded the highest level of expenditure to the State in recent years this was the first time it had also been the largest source of total international visitors.

“We are also starting to see the return of more Japanese travellers making their way to Queensland and the steady growth of visitors out of Korea, Singapore, Taiwan, Indonesia and Malaysia.

“It is why the Government, through Tourism and Events Queensland (TEQ), is heavily focussed on making sure Queensland is a well-known, high priority destination for Asian travellers.

“We are also seeing investors recognise the potential for growth in our tourism industry with more than $11 billion in new hotels and resort projects planned for Queensland.”

Ms Jones said the total number of international visitors to Queensland grew 10% to 2.4 million.

“These visitors spent close to 52 million nights in Queensland.

“China recorded the strongest expenditure growth of 34% with just over $1 billion supported by strong gains from key source markets including the US (29%), Germany (10%), Japan (9%) and New Zealand (4%),” she said.

While visitors from the USA increased by 18% to 208,000, Japan added 15% to 177,000 and the UK 7% to 231,000.

[ENDS]