Tasmania releases plans for eco-tourism

Aiming to compete with Australian eco tourism efforts from Queensland, Tasmania’s State Government has released plans to relaunch the region as a eco-friendly based tourism destination.

Working with Melbourne, Global Eco Asia Pacific Tourism Conference convener Tony Charters explained the two states would team up to build tourism to southern Australia.

“Going on current form, that will pair Melbourne as the lead tourism city with Tasmania as the heartland of ecotourism, making southern Australia a formidable destination,” Mr Charters said.

Mr Charters said the benefit of building an eco destination had fallen short with many Governments down under while locations in Asia are “running at 100mph” with the sector.

He explained that while establishing the state as an eco-destination, the long term benefits would more than cover the efforts.

“Ecotourism is not a ‘quick fix’ option for governments to plug the holes after a resource boom, for example,” Mr Charters said.

“It is a very logical and forward thinking choice for Tasmania, but it will take 15 years to bed the industry in.

“Once that is done, ecotourism will provide more jobs than logging, be sustainable and form an important plank of an export oriented economy.”

Mr Charters added that as a whole the country needed to invest more into its natural attractions and utilise them to increase visitor numbers.

According to the convener, the Great Barrier Reef’s figures are sitting around the same as 20 years ago while Kakadu numbers fell compared to visitors in the early 90s.

“National parks for example need ongoing support from government, not just a one-off injection of funds,” he explained.

“Other states can take the lead, with long term vision and investment roughly equivalent to one sports stadium each year, but spread across the state’s protected areas.

The Global Eco conference is being held in Sydney from November 7th to 10th.

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