Territory Stories

Questions Day 5 - Wednesday 13 February 1991



Questions Day 5 - Wednesday 13 February 1991

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Parliamentary Record 2


Questions for 6th Assembly 1990 - 1994; ParliamentNT; Parliamentary Record; 6th Assembly 1990 - 1994




Made available by the Legislative Assembly of the Northern Territory





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Legislative Assembly of the Northern Territory

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Attribution International 4.0 (CC BY 4.0)

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Legislative Assembly of the Northern Territory



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QUESTIONS - Wednesday 13 February 1991 company, Ocean Cruise Lines, has confirmed that 4 scheduled cruises by its liners will feature Darwin in rearranged schedules as a direct result of the Gulf crisis. The reason is that travellers are more likely to book on a liner that is seen to avoid possible trouble spots in and around Europe. The fact that this liner is choosing Darwin over its regular, scheduled port cities in Africa and India is in itself a good sign for Top End tourism. It shows the confidence that these international tourist organisations have in the relative safety of Australian shores and the viability of Darwin's attractions. Whilst there has been a reduction in the number of tourists entering Australia since the outbreak of war in the Gulf, indications are that this trend will be reversed as travellers reassess the perceived threat of flying and look to the South Pacific as a relatively secure area. It is anticipated that the perception of a threat of terrorist activity in Europe and in the United States will enhance the attraction of travel to Australia. Europeans are being reassured that it is safe to fly with transportation administrators claiming that anti-terrorist measures are at their highest. Major airline companies such as Lufthansa and Singapore Airlines have embarked on an advertising campaign aimed at mitigating a fear of flying in these troubled times and pointing out that flights to Asia and the Pacific region have been re-routed via the Soviet Union. Agents in the United States are rebooking clients originally headed for Europe to the South Pacific. This is in line with the response of the American travelling public to the US bombing of Libya in 1986, when Americans avoided travel to Europe and traffic to the South Pacific region increased dramatically. It is anticipated that a similar response will be evident from Europe and Japan with a major Swiss tour operator predicting that, despite the Gulf War, there will be a sustained demand for overseas holidays this year by Swiss travellers. The European travel industry is suffering severely as a result of reduced numbers of incoming tourists. Flights from the United States to many European countries are reported to be virtually empty. With some companies cutting back on their trans-Atlantic service, the European industry is especially worried about the loss of the American and the Japanese tourists who are major incoming markets in Europe. Another effect of the war, which will be of benefit to the Territory and the domestic market, is the cancellation by many Australians of their overseas tours. Logically, it can be assumed that they will now travel within Australia. It is vital that the Northern Territory Tourist Commission continue its aggressive marketing campaign both within Australia and overseas to ensure that the Territory capitalises on this opportunity. I am confident that the Northern Territory Tourist Commission's professional campaigns, which have thwarted difficulties faced by tourists in the past, can again take advantage of the opportunities that have been opened to the Territory's tourist industry. Representatives of the Northern Territory tourist industry are not in the habit of dwelling on pessimism but rather of acting on existing possibilities for expansion or consolidation. Benefits exist for the local industry in these troubled times and they are on offer to the Territory. There is no doubt international and domestic travel will be maintained throughout the length of this conflict considering the world-wide fascination with the outback and culture that is unique to this region and the fact that the Territory is Australia's No 1 tour destination. The local industry is now poised to take advantage of its position in the international and domestic tourism and travel market. 98

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