Chinese tourists visiting Australia Image Source: news.
International arrivals to Australia would be suffering, if not for the steady increase in Chinese visitors, according to national industry body, the Tourism and Transport Forum (TTF).
TTF chief executive John Lee said Australias arrival growth is completely underpinned by China.
Without the strong rise in arrivals from China, international arrivals would be declining... and a focus on attracting Chinese visitors in the future is entirely appropriate given the enormous potential of that market.
According to figures released by the Australian Bureau of Statistics, international arrivals for the month of May 2012 were up 1.8 percent (6900 visitors) on last years numbers.
However, Mr Lee stressed the importance of placing value on other Asian markets.
It's also important to note that Australia is not alone in recognising the potential of China, and other countries are also devoting considerable resources to targeting Asian travellers.
For the first four months of 2012, Chinese visitation to the US grew by almost 50 percent, citing an overall increase in Asian visitors of 27 percent.
Over the same period, Australia has seen overall growth from Asia of 5.9 per cent, and lower arrivals from key markets including Singapore, Malaysia, and Thailand, Mr Lee said.
It is vital Australian agencies have sufficient resources to promote Australia in those key markets to ensure we don't lose hard-won market share.
The United States recently launched the first-ever national tourism campaign to boost international arrivals.
President Obama is personally backing this effort as part of a drive to double US exports by 2015, and other countries are following suit, Mr Lee said.
It is vital that Australia's campaign, launched in Shanghai last month, has the financial backing to compete with the US.
Source = e-Travel Blackboard: P.T