RBA predicts tough times

Wednesday 21 December 2011

RBA predicts tough times

Queensland tourism is looking to the growing Chinese market for future prosperity, but according to the Reserve Bank of Australia's December quarter bulletin, regional areas including Port Douglas risk missing out on the influx of tourists.

The RBA predicts that by the end of the decade around a third of the growth in Australian tourism will come from China, but warned that regional hotel operators could struggle for years should they not find a way to attract Chinese tourists who have a preference to holiday in cities.

“This poses a challenge for the tourism industry in leisure and regional areas, which have at least to date had limited exposure to the growing segments of the inbound tourism market compared with Australia’s capital cities,” the RBA stated in a Property Observer report.

“Capital cities have benefited from a rising share of overseas visitor expenditure as spending by international visitors in regional areas has declined somewhat in recent years in real terms.”

“This trend is consistent with the strong growth in Chinese visitors, who demonstrate a strong propensity for travel to capital cities, and the decline in Japanese tourists that has had a more pronounced effect on overall tourism demand in some regional destinations.

“For instance, in 2010-11, Sydney and Melbourne were the most popular destinations for Chinese visitors, whereas Japanese visitors have demonstrated a relatively stronger preference for travel to Queensland’s beach destinations, notably the Gold Coast and Tropical North Queensland.”   

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