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Rivergate Superyacht Centre To Spark Tourism Jobs And Spending Bonanza

January 30, 2021 Business News No Comments

Plans to transform Brisbane’s Rivergate Marina and Shipyard into one of the world’s premier superyacht destinations would deliver a huge post-COVID boost for tourism throughout Queensland and Australia.

Already ranked among the top three superyacht shipyards in the world, the proposed Rivergate expansion is expected to bring another 60 large private vessels to our waters each year with tourism operators to be among the biggest winners.

The expansion would create an estimated 520 new tourism jobs and contribute a massive $525 million in economic value per year as superyacht owners and charterers cruise the east coast and Great Barrier Reef.

The Whitsundays, Fraser Coast, Cairns, Gold Coast, Brisbane and Sydney would be among the biggest beneficiaries from extra spending on hotels, restaurants, café and bars, together with high end tourism activities and vessel provisioning.

Rivergate Director Tom Hill said the proposed $200 million superyacht hub would be the only location in South East Asia able to lift and service multiple vessels of up to 90 metres and 3,000 tonnes.

“This expansion would provide a much-needed helping hand to the tourism industry at a critical time for the sector’s economic recovery,” Mr Hill said.

“There is substantial pent-up demand to visit Australia but without appropriate infrastructure, many of these larger superyachts often found in Europe and the Caribbean are unable to bring their vessels and crew to Queensland.

“The new facilities will immediately solve this issue and also allow vessels to spend more time in our region, staying for up to two years before or after works have been undertaken.”

Industry research shows that crew and passenger spending on local tourism – hotel stays, dining, luxury shopping and tourism experiences such as tours of the Great Barrier Reef – increases exponentially with the size of the vessel.

For example, an 85-metre European superyacht moored at Rivergate recently spent more than $600,000 on fuel and provisioning for a two-week charter, providing a boost for local suppliers.

“Our plans for an expansion of Rivergate will put Australia firmly on the map for international superyacht owners looking to experience our world-class tourism offerings.

“We will effectively be marketing Brisbane, Queensland and Australia to the world, showcasing our region to influential, high net worth individuals with the potential to generate more international investment as result of this visitation.”

The Rivergate expansion would see the construction of a $35 million syncrolift shiplift, representing a 10-fold increase in lifting capacity to 3,000 tonnes.

Other plans include a new hardstand to accommodate multiple superyachts, three large refit sheds, two in water service berths, café, crew accommodation and recreation facilities, allowing crews to stay for extended periods of time.

The expansion is estimated to generate $459.4 million a year for the local economy, including around $167.3 million in direct revenue from 60 superyachts undertaking repair and refit works.

It is expected that 75 per cent of crew and passenger expenditure will be spent directly on small and medium-sized businesses in the local area, supporting local industry and jobs.

Plans for the expansion are at an advanced stage with a Development Application lodged and construction ready to commence in 2021.

Tom Hill is available for interviews.

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