Gold Coast business leaders are again pleading for more clarity around Queensland borders, as the city plans its economic recovery from coronavirus.
Hundreds of local tourism operators and business heads turned out for the Future Gold Cost Forum at Movie World last night, where plans for economic recovery were discussed.
It’s no secret to anyone how hard our economy, which is heavily reliant on tourism, has been hit by the coronavirus pandemic this year.
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On top of the economic hit, Gold Coast businesses have also had to rapidly adjust plans and preparations around ever changing border restrictions, which are still in doubt.
The Chairman of the Star Entertainment Group John O’Neill told the Future Gold Coast Forum that industries are in desperate need of certainty from the state government.
“The aviation industry in particular needs a clear and consistent set of rules for when borders will open, as much notice as possible to stand people up and get planes in the sky.
“Also we need to know how hotspots will be defined, and the government’s response for any future outbreaks.
“There comes a point when the handbrake needs to be carefully released to allow the economy to recover without being propped up by artificial support systems like Job Keeper.
“We will rue the day if economic consequences become so dire, that we face a deep a long recession,” Mr O’Neill said.
Mr O’Neill outlined a recovery plan idea for the Gold Coast, which focuses on rebuilding our tourism industry as our economic foundation.
He’s vowed that the industry will be restored to its former glory, but we also need to grow entertainment offerings and the hospitality industry.
“As part of that, the Gold Coast will not only return as Australia’s most loved holiday destination.
“It will further increase its appeal as a must visit location for Australians and international visitors,” Mr O’Neill said.
Despite constant pleas from Gold Coast leaders and businesses around Queensland, the state government maintains that a decision on borders will be made at the end of the month.
Sydney, Victoria and Adelaide are considered hotspots to Queensland and are currently not allowed across the border without undergoing mandatory hotel quarantine.