SYDNEY, NSW, AUSTRALIA: The standard of Australia’s accommodation product will be further improved as a result of the awarding of grants in the first round of the Tourism Industry Regional Development Fund (TIRF).

The Accommodation Association of Australia welcomed the funding and in particular, that it has been allocated for use in many different Australian markets.

“Tourism Australia’s 2020 Potential specifically identified the need for improvement in quality, rather than quantity of accommodation in regional areas and the TIRF program delivers this,” said the Accommodation Association’s Chief Executive Officer, Richard Munro.

“While the grant funding is spread relatively thinly and there are some applicants who will no doubt be disappointed to have missed out, financial support provided by the TIRF represents a small, but significant step for the accommodation and tourism industries.”

According to the Minister for Tourism, the funding will leverage a combined investment of over AUD$141 million, “which is fantastic news for Australian operators and those that missed out will have further opportunities as the grant process is set to continue”, according to Munro.

Munro said improvements in the standard of Australia’s regional tourism and accommodation product should ultimately result in higher levels of visitation.

“A better accommodation product promotes both repeat and new visitors,” he said.

“It is also pleasing that there is such a diverse range of recipients who are located in many different parts of regional Australia.

“Similarly, the purposes for which the funding will be used are vastly different – from promoting Indigenous employment to removing hazards from accommodation rooms.

“Australia’s accommodation and tourism industries are better off as a result of funds being distributed as part of the TIRF program.”