The Coalition Government is set to break a key election promise to Australia’s tourism sector.
Before the election the Government promised to freeze the Passenger Movement Charge at $55 for the whole next term of the Parliament.
But today in The Australian it was revealed that the Abbott Government will increase the Passenger Movement Charge by almost 400%.
Departure taxes as high as $270 will be imposed on some international visitors.
The news comes just weeks after new figures were released showing growth in Chinese visitors has halved under the Coalition Government.
Tourism was also absent from the list of priority industries in the Abbott Government’s competitiveness agenda released in October.
The Coalition Policy on Tourism released on September 5 last year promised to “make it easier, not harder for the tourism sector”.
But since coming to office the Abbott Government has abandoned tourism, which is Australia’s largest services export and employs a million people.
Grants, research and investor tools have been slashed and access to business advice for Australia’s 280,000 tourism businesses axed.
The contempt of the Abbott Government for the tourism sector is exemplified by Tony Abbott’s failure to even appoint a Minister for Tourism.
Our tourism industry deserves better.