International visitors hit the peak of two years as tourists pour into Australia

SYDNEY, May 13 (Xinhua) — With the borders opening, the Australian tourism industry is beginning to see its first influx of international tourists in more than two years.

Director of the Australian Tourism Export Council (ATEC), Australia’s top tourism agency, Peter Shelley said Friday that a long period of uncertainty was beginning to end.

The Australian export tourism industry has endured two years of grueling conditions in which many businesses simply had no income or vision of when it would end, Shelley said.

According to data released Thursday by the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS), Australia’s international visitors had reached their highest level since February 2020, when an estimated 647,000 international travelers arrived in Australia before the borders closed in March.

In April of this year, 575,530 visitors arrived in Australia, 200,000 more than the previous month.

As a result, the pandemic has virtually decimated Australia’s $45 billion (about $31 billion) export tourism industry, but the ATEC said the government and industry should play an active role in its recovery.

“Now that our borders are open, we are seeing the green shoots of recovery and with export tourism companies looking to rebuild their markets, this is an important time for the government to invest in getting the industry back on track,” said Shelley. †

The ATEC launched a tourism campaign nicknamed ‘it’s time for tourism’, calling for more funding for the tourism marketing organization, Tourism Australia, and more training for workers in the tourism industry.

“As we rebuild our industry, we also have the opportunity to innovate and improve business practices, support a more sustainable industry and create a tourism industry of the future,” said Shelley.

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