Launch of Tourism & Aviation Futures Strategic Priority Package Today in Cairns

Cairns, QLD, Australia – ( November 21, 2012

Launch of Tourism & Aviation Futures Strategic Priority Package Today in Cairns

Launch of Tourism & Aviation Futures Strategic Priority Package Today in Cairns

Regional Development Australia Far North Queensland and Torres Strait Inc (RDA FNQ&TS) will unveil its Tourism & Aviation Futures Strategic Priority Package (SPP) in Cairns today.

RDA FNQ&TS CEO, Sonja Johnson said that tourism and aviation is a key pillar of the region’s economy and one of 11 priority areas identified by the committee within its Regional Road Map that has been packaged into a set of strategies and initiatives for action.

The Regional Road Map (an updated version was released last month) is a critical document incorporating the aspirations, goals and strategies from community plans that is presented to both the Commonwealth and Queensland Governments to assist with their future planning and budget allocation.

This is the fourth SPP to be unveiled this year following those focusing on Climate Adaptation, Agricultural Futures and Business & Resource Sector Growth.

“With renewed enthusiasm in our tourism industry due to the recently introduced China direct flights and the potential this brings, we feel there is a need for the region to keep presenting a strong agenda for building on our inherent strengths and competitive edge. The Strategic Priority Package underpins the need for our regional tourism and aviation industry to provide a united front that will be used for negotiations with both Commonwealth and State governments in order to affect the 2013-14 budgetary cycle,” said Ms Johnson.

The Tourism and Aviation Futures SPP will be implemented over the next 12 months in accordance with the Regional Road Map.

It comprises seven key strategies and multiple initiatives (against each strategy).

To ensure an informed and cohesive set of initiatives, the RDA FNQ&TS’ Tourism and Aviation Futures SPP was developed in conjunction with key stakeholdersincluding Stephen Gregg, Chairman of Tourism Queensland, Rob Giason, CEO ofTourism Tropical North Queensland, Russell Boswell from Savannah Way, ChrisPiggott, Cairns Aviation Skills Centre, Simon Wild, Managing Director of Skytrans, Gavin Taylor from the Department of State Development, Infrastructure and Planning and Kevin Brown, CEO of Cairns Airport.

According to Ms Johnson the first strategy focuses on managing the Northern Queensland aviation strategy by addressing freight and backfill opportunities and reforming federal airline attraction operating models.

The second strategy is aimed at broadening destination appeal through the promotion of significant sub-regional precincts.

Strategy three is based on rethinking the interaction between natural assets and tourism development.

The fourth strategy is designed to elevate the region’s brand position through evidence-based methodology, cross-sectoral product development, positioning of new products and increased marketing funds.

The fifth strategy aims to develop industry skills and business capacity and addressing regulatory issues.

The remaining two strategies focus on delivering resilience within the tourism industry and driving Cairns’ position as Australia’s gateway to Asia-Pacific.

“While RDA drives the implementation of the package and uses it as a negotiation tool with both tiers of government, it is our regional partners and stakeholders that deliver the initiatives as part of their normal scope.  In the case of it being a new initiative, RDA will seek funding support so our partners can work effectively.”

Ms Johnson said the next step in the process is the development of a working plan detailing the ‘who’ and ‘when’.  Members of the public are invited to join the online discussion board and provide feedback in relation to all launched packages.

To access a copy of the Tourism & Aviation Futures Strategic Priority Package online, go to:

About Regional Development Australia

Regional Development Australia (RDA) is a partnership between Australian, State, Territory and local governments to strengthen regional communities.

The national network of 55 committees which delivers RDA are made up of local leaders who volunteer their time to work with government, business and community groups to deliver better services to their regions.

The committees work with their communities to find ways to deal with the economic, social and environmental issues affecting them.

The regional Road Maps, produced by the local RDAs, will guide the committees in supporting improvements for their communities.

The Australian Government funds these committees and so do State, Territory and local governments in some jurisdictions.

About Regional Development FNQ & TS

From Cardwell to the Cape, Torres Strait and inland to the Tablelands and taking in Croydon and Etheridge shires, the Far North Queensland and Torres Strait branch of Regional Development Australia(RDA FNQ&TS) takes in a vast and diverse area of the regional Queensland.

It works to provide one voice in terms of regional issues and priorities and as such provides guidance and support to the many agencies, organisations and individuals working towards long term, sustainable growth, prosperity and well-being of this region.

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