TRAVEL GAZETTE – Chinese tourists could be worth up to 100 billion U.S. dollars to the Australian economy by 2025, while making local businesses “China ready” could contribute further economic benefit, the head of the Australia China Business Council (ACBC) has said on Monday.
Conducted by LEK Consulting, the study into the “the broader economic potential of Chinese visits to Australia” found Chinese tourism could be worth more than 100 billion U.S. dollars per year by 2025, when an expected 2 million Chinese tourists per year make the trip “down under.”
Taking into account “secondary transactions” as a result of tourism — including education, goods and services, and growing Chinese investment in Australia — the report said Australia was set to benefit immensely at the hands of China’s growing middle class.
According to the report, 46 percent of Chinese visitors are repeat visitors, with many of those returning to Australia to undertake study, invest in local businesses or invest in the local property market.
Of those who signaled an intent to engage with Australia further, 85 percent said their visit to Australia was “influential” or “very influential” in the decision.
John Brumby, president of the ACBC, said the report highlights the “enormous opportunity” that presents itself to Australia in the coming years.
“Australia should view these tourists as brand ambassadors — a prime opportunity to directly market Australia as a provider of high quality products and services,” Brumby said in a statement following the release of the report on Monday.
“As this report identifies, Chinese tourists present Australia with an important opportunity to tap into the broader Chinese market. When tourists have a great holiday in Australia they are more likely to purchase Australian products and services when they return home.”
Brumby said Australia could further capitalize on the Chinese middle class investment by making sure businesses — particularly tourism-related business — are able to cater to the Chinese market.
“With Chinese tourist numbers rising by 19 percent year-on-year between 2010 and 2015, there is no doubt that Australia presents an attractive product to Chinese tourists,” he said.
“However in order to ensure that Australia is best placed to take advantage of this opportunity, it is critical that Australian business and government act in a coordinated approach.”
“It is only when the wider business community is able to leverage the great experiences that Chinese tourists have in Australia, are we able to fully realize benefits that tourism brings to the Australian economy.”