Chairman's Report

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Annual Report 2014-15

Having now  served as chair for nearly 12  months, I'm both pleased and proud of the work of Tourism Tasmania in what has  been a terrific year for tourism in the state.

My appointment coincided with the election of a new  government and along with it a new vision for tourism and a new goal of  attracting 1.5 million visitors a year by 2020.

At the same  time, the Tasmanian Government made Tourism Tasmania a standalone agency,  giving us the independence to respond quickly to emerging  opportunities and greater creative freedom to promote the state.

This  independence complements our earlier move away from being a full-service State  Tourism Organisation to streamline our operations and better focus on  marketing.

Of course, we  know there are many reasons why people visit the state – not just for holidays –  and Tourism Tasmania on its own is unlikely to achieve this target. We also  know there are constraints to growth that if not addressed will further compromise  our ability to reach our goal.

To grow total visitation we need  to rely on the work of a range of stakeholders, not just Tourism Tasmania. That's  why the Tasmanian Government's approach recognises the importance of all  partners in achieving our target.

With Tourism  Tasmania's move away from industry support, the Department of State Growth has  taken on supply-side development. This reallocation of responsibilities  will ensure our industry continues to meet the expectations of our visitors.

The  capacity to communicate and operate at the local level is also vitally  important and that's why the government is committing to a new three-year  funding agreement with our regional tourism organisations (RTOs). Our RTOs not  only fulfil a critical role in providing marketing and distribution  opportunities, and industry development for their local tourism operators but  also act as advocates for their region.

We are also  working closely with the Tourism Industry Council Tasmania (TICT), the peak  industry body for Tasmania's tourism operators.

T21 (previously Tourism 21) is the partnership  agreement between the Tasmanian tourism  industry represented by TICT and the Government of Tasmania. Building on the  success of previous agreements, T21 – The  Tasmanian Visitor Economy Strategy  2015-2020 is expected to be finalised in October. The new agreement will provide strategic  direction and help align the future investment of government resources and  industry to better achieve the strategy's shared goals.

The revised  strategy is a timely and natural extension of the Tourism 21 approach. By identifying and elevating the value of  increased visitation to Tasmania across all sectors of the Tasmanian economy,  the government is placing visitors at the core of Tasmania's economic agenda.

Having  previously undertaken a major refocus in our strategic intent and restructured  our operations, along with our more recent move to a stand-alone agency,  Tourism Tasmania is now well placed to drive demand and help achieve our new  priorities for the state.

I  thank Grant Hunt, the previous chair for his leadership and Brett Torossi for  acting as chair in the interim. I also thank the Minister for Tourism for his  support and of course, John as CEO and his dedicated staff for their hard work  in achieving such impressive results over this past year. I look forward to an  even more exciting year ahead.

James Cretan
Chair Tourism  Tasmania

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