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Australian tourism picks up in 2012

Photo by Jan Kratochvila
Photo by Jan Kratochvila

Australia’s tourism industry performed well in 2012, as the country welcomed 6.1 million international arrivals – up 4.6% year-on-year.

The result was driven by emerging Asian markets, notably China, which saw a 16% jump in visitors to 625,000, overtaking the UK to become the country’s second largest source market behind New Zealand. In fact, eight of Australia’s top 10 source markets are now in the Asia Pacific region, including India, Malaysia, Singapore and Vietnam.

“In many ways, 2012 was a year of transition for our industry, as we continue to adapt to the Asian Century and the enormous opportunities provided by the region’s fast emerging and increasingly mobile middle classes.” Andrew McEvoy, Managing Director of Tourism Australia. “China is undoubtedly a key engine room of growth – up 16% in 2012, on the back of similar double digit growth in 2011 and 2010.”

McEvoy added however, that Australia “should we forget our traditional western markets”.

”After a few difficult years, the US market is showing signs of recovery, up 4% in 2012,” he noted. “We’re also seeing a similarly positive bounce-back out of Japan, another important market for us.”

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