"Tourism currently contributes more than $26 billion to the NSW tourism economy from overnight visitor expenditure and creates one in 24 jobs in NSW.
"The Awards provide a valuable role in highlighting and recognising the diversity and strength of our State’s tourism attractions, accommodation and experiences," Mr Souris said.
The NSW Tourism Awards, which will be held at Royal Randwick on 28 November, 2013, recognise excellence and the achievements of NSW tourism businesses and individuals.
"It is particularly pleasing that the 2013 Awards received the strongest representation ever of entries in the Indigenous Tourism category as well as the Destination Marketing category."
"This further reinforces the NSW Government’s plans to grow the Aboriginal cultural tourism industry for NSW, as outlined in its Aboriginal Tourism Action Plan, a part of the Government’s Regional tourism reform initiated from our Visitor Industry Action Plan."
Now in its 24th year, the NSW Tourism Awards are presented by the Tourism Industry Council NSW, with the NSW Government’s Tourism and Major Event’s agency Destination NSW as the official sponsor, featuring 31 categories across the industry.
Ken Corbett, Chairman of the Tourism Industry Council NSW, was particularly impressed with the standard of this year’s submissions.
"The Tourism Industry Council NSW congratulates all finalists for reaching this stage. The standard this year is very high which created a highly competitive contest," Mr Corbett said.
For information on the Award finalists and to purchase tickets to the gala ceremony visit the NSW Tourism Awards website.