Regional Australia gets bid fund boost

The Coalition Government has announced it will be changing the Business Events Bid Fund Program to help regional destinations access funds to help attract international business events.

Federal Tourism Minister Simon Birmingham announced a series of changes to the eligibility criteria of the $12 million Bid Fund Program, which is managed by Tourism Australia, to allow destinations bidding for smaller events to apply for funding.

“The Morrison Government’s Business Events Bid Fund Program aims to provide Australian destinations with a crucial edge when competing against other international destinations for an event by providing funding support for their bids,” Mr Birmingham said.

“Business events are one of the most crucial sectors of Australia’s tourism industry delivering huge economic benefits to the broader economy, with business events visitors injecting $5 billion into the economy last year.”

“After reflecting on the first year of operation we asked the industry what could be done to make the fund more effective. Based on their feedback, we felt there was scope to make the program more accessible by broadening the terms and conditions so that more bids are eligible to access funds.”

“This means that the program will now offer greater assistance to regional destinations that often bid for smaller international events and which we know provide far reaching economic benefits to their local communities by filling hotel rooms, restaurants and venues.”

The Business Events Bid Fund Program is designed to increase conversion of new international business for Australia by offering financial support for bidding organisations such as convention bureaux and convention centres.

Funds are only provided once the event is confirmed and cover costs related to the delivery of the event, including venue hire and accommodation costs.