Australian industry welcomes Ferguson appointment
The appointment of highly-respected former Federal Tourism Minister Martin Ferguson as the chair of Tourism Accommodation Australia (TAA) gives the sector its strongest voice in Canberra for many years, according to the Australian Hotels Association (AHA).
TAA represents major hotel groups and over 1,000 hotels, motels, resorts and serviced apartments and is a division of the AHA.
?Mr Ferguson?s appointment comes at a significant time for the industry as it concentrates resources to provide greater advocacy for an industry that is about to undergo its most significant expansionary phase in almost two decades,? the AHA said in a statement.
Mr. Ferguson entered Parliament in 1996, where he held the Shadow Ministry responsibility for tourism from 2004-2007, and was then Minister for Tourism in the Rudd and Gillard Governments from 2007-13.
As Federal Tourism Minister, Ferguson was responsible for announcing the Tourism 2020 plan, which played a major role in elevating the tourism and hospitality to the forefront of priority industries for Australia?s future growth.
Over 75 hotels are currently in the development pipeline, with the figure likely to grow to over 100 hotels scheduled for building by the end of 2020, and the boom in hotel development is providing momentum for Australia?s tourism and events sector.
?Australia now has a very competitive currency, major new tourism infrastructure underway, and is one of the fastest growing industries for employment, especially in regional areas that are currently being affected by the mining slowdown,? said Ferguson.
?The industry needs to advocate long-term and sustainable policies that encourage both development of the industry and creation of new employment opportunities.?