The NSW Government continues to heavily invest in its Economic Recovery Strategy in an effort to boost the economy now that COVID-19 vaccination rates are above 80 per cent and businesses in Sydney and across the State are beginning to re-open.
The $530 million tourism and events recovery package is especially welcome news for tourism, hospitality and events businesses which have been amongst the hardest hit during the recent lockdowns.
Travel and tourism incentives include $250 million for the expanded Stay & Rediscover scheme providing a $50 voucher for NSW residents to use at various accommodation providers across the state. The pilot scheme will commence in November and be open to all NSW adults from March 2022. To incentivise international airlines to re-commence flights to Sydney, the State Government is putting $60 million into an Aviation Attraction Fund. Sydney Airport also announced it will match this investment dollar for dollar.
Specifically for events and festival organisers, the State Government will provide $150 million to encourage the recovery of major event activity including $50 million for a Regional Events Package to support major events, festivals, agricultural shows and community events across the regions. The Festival Relaunch package will see $25 million to stabilise established commercial and not-for-profit festivals, big and small, so they can program with confidence into 2022/23. Additionally, NSW will provide an Event Saver Fund for immediate support to organisers if events are cancelled or disrupted by any public health orders during the 2021-22 summer.
For Sydney CBD, there will be $6 million invested to bring business events back to the city. This is in addition to the previously announced $50 million for the CBDs Revitalisation Program to support events and activations in CBDs across Greater Sydney and surrounds.
And lastly, $10 million for a Recovery Marketing Campaign including an extension of the successful road-trips campaign launched in 2020.
With this financial commitment from the NSW Government, along with schemes already in place to encourage the State’s residents and visitors to embrace travel, events and entertainment, these sectors can hopefully begin to rebuild their businesses over the summer and into the New Year with more confidence, and be shielded from any further COVID-19 related restrictions.