Victoria’s visitor economy is booming with visitor numbers and expenditure reaching record highs, backed up by significant investment and a strong business presence across the state.Data released today showed that Victoria saw 80.6 million people visit the state including day-trips, in the year ending June 2018, pushing the value of the visitor economy up to a record $27.3 billion.

In that same period, Melbourne tourism expenditure climbed to $17.4 billion, while in regional Victoria tourism reached $9.9 billion.

Today’s release of the International Visitor Survey for June 2018 showed that international expenditure in Victoria continued to increase at a rate of 7.3 per cent, which was above the national average growth rate, to reach a record $8.0 billion in the year ending June 2018.

Victoria experienced year-on-year growth in international visitors to reach 3.0 million (+7.9 per cent), above the national average growth rate (+6.2 per cent), as well as key competitors New South Wales (+5.9 per cent) and Queensland (+4.1 per cent).

The data also showed that more than 532,000 international overnight visitors spent $558 in regional Victoria, with Daylesford and the Macedon Ranges (+10.4 per cent) and Geelong and the Bellarine (+9.3 per cent) leading the pack with notable growth.

Double-digit increases in spend were recorded from Indian (+22.9 per cent), Chinese (+16.7 per cent), Japanese (+37.6 per cent) and Indonesian (+19.9 per cent) visitors, driving overall growth in expenditure. Chinese visitor expenditure in Victoria reached $3 billion.

The Tourism Investment Monitor 2017-18 was also released today and showed that Victoria’s investment pipeline was valued at $11.0 billion in 2017-18.

Key projects within this pipeline included $500 million for Melbourne Airport’s construction of a third runway and Melbourne and Olympic Parks redevelopment: $338 million (Stage 2) and $272 million (Stage 3).

Accommodation projects (approximately 22 per cent of Victoria’s investment pipeline) include 35 projects worth $2.4 billion with the capacity to add 6,785 additional rooms to accommodation supply to meet growing demand.

Finally, the Tourism Businesses in Australia June 2012 to June 2017, report has today offered useful insights for industry, showing that in June 2017, there were approximately 77,800 tourism businesses in Victoria, representing 13 per cent of the total 590,800 businesses in Victoria.

In June 2017, 70 per cent of tourism businesses were located in Melbourne and 30 per cent were located in Regional Victoria.

The Murray region had the largest share of tourism businesses in Regional Victoria at 4.2 per cent, followed by the Yarra Valley and Dandenong Ranges (3.9 per cent) and Mornington Peninsula (3.8 per cent).

Visit Victoria Chief Executive Officer Peter Bingeman said that as the number of visitors increases so do the number of tourism businesses, especially in regional Victoria, and this is being backed up with strong investment.

“We’re seeing more and more tourists, both domestic and international, come to Victoria and enjoy the diversity of experiences on offer in our urban and regional centres.”

“The data clearly shows that Victoria is growing tourism businesses faster than our interstate competitors with strong investment continuing to effectively underpin the future of the sector.”