NSW Premier Mike Baird today announced the NSW Government will focus on doubling the value of Chinese tourism to NSW by 2020 following the success of recent major events, such as this year’s Vivid Sydney Festival.
The announcement was made while Mr Baird was visiting the Chinese city of Shanghai, during his first international mission as Premier.
“China is a priority market for NSW and working with the Chinese travel trade is key as the NSW Government strives to achieve its goal of doubling overnight visitor expenditure by 2020,” Mr Baird said.
“We are already seeing results. NSW is the number one Australian state for Chinese visitors with more than 420,000 Chinese visitors arriving last financial year.
“These visitors stayed more than 12 million nights and spent over $1.5 billion dollars. However, Chinese tourists still represent around two percent of the out of region outbound travel market so there is room to improve.
“Record results from this year’s Vivid Sydney Festival indicate the increasing Chinese middle class’ desire to travel the world, and what better place to visit than NSW?
“We want more visitors to experience the Southern Hemisphere’s largest festival of light, music and ideas and we are committed to working with our Chinese partners.
“I’m in Shanghai to extend an invitation to Chinese wholesale and retail agents to come to Sydney to experience this beautiful festival first-hand as part of the Vivid Sydney 2015 China Agents Familiarisation Trip.
“Promoting this festival to the most influential wholesale and retail travel agents in China will allow them to take their knowledge back to China to sell even more packages in 2016.
“I expect this to be the biggest Chinese tourism delegation ever to arrive in Sydney as the NSW Government ramps up its promotion of NSW in China.
“Final results from this year’s 18-day Vivid Sydney Festival show more than $41 million was injected into the NSW visitor economy.
“More than 1.43 million people attended Vivid Sydney, a 79 per cent increase on last year, including 30,000 international visitors, of which around 20,000 travelled on Vivid Sydney travel packages.
“Almost 10,000 travel packages were purchased by visitors from China, which was a 35 per cent increase on last year. However, we do believe there is further room to improve.
“We’ll work with Chinese airlines and travel partners to help them promote events such as Vivid Sydney, as well as New Year’s Eve and Chinese New Year, as we work to attract more Chinese visitors to this great State.”
Mr Baird made the announcement while inspecting one of 160 billboards, which are being displayed in Shanghai and Beijing, as part of the NSW Government's 'Love Every Second in Sydney' campaign.
Mr Baird also announced the China Australia Millennial Project (CAMP) would be expanded as part of the Vivid Ideas branch of Vivid Sydney 2015.
“A new initiative will bring together 100 young innovators from China and match them with 100 bright young minds from Australia for a five-day innovation workshop as part of CAMP,” Mr Baird said.
“This initiative reflects the essence behind the Vivid Ideas program, which promotes ideas, discussion and debate.
“Successful applicants will be asked to work together to consider challenges common to both countries before being given an opportunity to pitch their ideas to compete for grants, venture capital, and consideration in the Premier’s Innovation Initiative.
“The program will provide young people from both countries with an opportunity to learn more about each other’s cultural backgrounds and share ideas on common issues.
“I encourage young people from across China and NSW to get involved in this exciting new initiative,” he said.
Calls for expressions of interest from Chinese innovators aged 18 – 35 are now open at www.australiachina.org.