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Bowden more interested in showboating than fixing tourism reputation

June 20, 2024

Media Release from Shadow Minister for Tourism and Hospitality Marie-Clare Boothby MLA:

Tourism Minister Joel Bowden showed in estimates that the Lawler Labor Government has no plans to repair the damage to our tourism reputation from crime.

“Minister Bowden was too busy showboating about his former footy career and passing around a football as well as launching personal attacks, rather than demonstrating any real plans Labor has to help the Territory’s tourism industry recover from the extensive damage to our reputation from crime,” Shadow Minister for Tourism Marie-Clare Boothby said.

“Labor’s economic mismanagement and crime crisis is killing the Territory’s tourism sector, with major events like the Darwin Cup carnival down 43% in ticket sales and visitors to the recent Supercars also down on top of the Alice Springs Masters Games being on shaky ground to even go ahead.

“Under questioning about the impact of crime on holiday makers’ decision-making, the government admitted the number one concern for international tourists visiting Australia is safety and security but revealed no plan on how to fix our damaged reputation from crime.

“They also failed to answer what people are googling about the Territory when researching their holidays and how crime rated on the list.

“No slick ad can gloss over the images beamed all over the world of the riot at the Todd Tavern in Alice Springs with staff and patrons barricading themselves in to stay safe, or the daylight attacks on the owner of ice cream shop Johnn Johnn's in Darwin.

“Labor’s failures to deal with crime has trashed the Territory’s reputation as a safe place for tourists to visit.

“Minister Bowden also refused to confirm funding for the upgrades to the Mereenie Loop, important to improve access for tourists in Central Australia.

“All Labor has confirmed today is they are more interested in themselves than Territorians.”

The latest tourism snapshots show domestic visitor numbers were down 10% across the NT for 2023 compared to 2022, with visitor nights down 28% and expenditure 16%. Under Labor, less tourists are coming, they are staying for a shorter time and spending less.

Only the CLP has a plan to grow our economy and make Territorians safe. By rebuilding the Territory’s reputation as a safe place to live, work and invest, we will create jobs and opportunities

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