Mr PEDERICK: I acknowledge that this motion brought to the house:
(a) acknowledges that 27 September is World Tourism Day; and
(b) acknowledges the importance of tourism for the culture and the economy of South Australia.
World Tourism Day is celebrated to foster awareness among the international community of the importance of tourism and its social, cultural, political and economic value. Tourism is a supergrowth sector and a major economic priority for South Australia. We have our sights set firmly on an $8 billion visitor economy by 2020.
Tourism currently sits at a record-breaking $6.7 billion spend as more than 6.8 million international and domestic visitors flock to our state. Chinese travellers are the fastest growing inbound market for our state, with 57,000 visitors spending a record $415 million. Tourism directly employs 36,000 South Australians. When you add up the number of people who are indirectly employed, the total employment rises to 56,000 jobs in the tourism sector.
I would like to acknowledge some of the beautiful spots in South Australia and certainly some in my electorate as well. A lot of opportunities are coming our way because of foresight and vision, not the least of which is the major spend by Sam Shahin and his family, of the Peregrine Corporation, on The Bend Motorsport Park at Tailem Bend. Only the other day they hosted a world-rated go-kart event. Recently, they had the Supercars event, which I attended, and there have also been motorbike events. I think the best days are the self-drive days. They are good. I have managed to get out there in my old V8 ute and test the cobwebs once again.
It is exciting to have this sort of development in our community, and there are so many spin-offs. There are the connections through to the rest of the Murraylands, the Hills, the fantastic Langhorne Creek wineries, right down through the Upper South-East heading south towards Coonalpyn, just outside my electorate, and out to the Mallee. People can go there to look at some of the national parks, such as Ngarkat, Billiatt and others.
Flow north of Tailem Bend and you get to Murray Bridge and Monarto. Obviously, Monarto Zoo is world renowned. If it is not one of the largest, it could be the largest free-range zoo in the world, but I would have to check. They do a magnificent job out there at the zoo, and I congratulate Elaine Bensted and all the staff. She works with both Adelaide Zoo and Monarto Zoo. They work out there with different species and on breeding programs.
In the future, we are going to have a major accommodation site set up. There is a fantastic benefactor who is going to pour in a lot of money for glamping. If you do not like camping, you might like glamping, which is sort of supersized camping. That will give so much opportunity out where the lions are. You can certainly go to the Lions 360 experience. I have been there before with the member for Mawson.
The Hon. L.W.K. Bignell: Yes. We were too big to eat.
The ACTING SPEAKER (Mr Duluk): Order!
Mr PEDERICK: They were looking at the member for Mawson and thought, 'What a nice morsel that would be.'
The ACTING SPEAKER (Mr Duluk): It is inappropriate to reflect on another member.
Mr PEDERICK: Yes, I would have been more than a mouthful. I must commend the builders of the 360 experience. They did a fantastic job. You can have multiple lions on top of the cage looking down at you, looking quite hungry. You can also have the opportunity to feed the lions. It is a fantastic experience to be involved in.
The opportunities in my region are only going to grow more and more as we see the new Murray Bridge racing track open up early next year. This has been coming for a long time. The track has been down for a long time, but it was just a matter of getting the funds together to get it completed. It is close to a $40 million investment. We also have a greyhound facility, which is about a $7 million or $8 million investment, which will open very soon as well. I note that next year the Bridgeport Hotel redevelopment will happen, where we will have a six-storey, 4½ star hotel development in Murray Bridge.
The beauty of things like the Bridgeport project and the new racing club venue is that our area will be able to attract large conventions to the area. Apart from the already fantastic accommodation we have highlighted with this 4½ star accommodation, we will also manage to get conventions of up to 500 or 600 people and accommodate them in the regions so they can see the benefits of the River Murray, which is a great tourism venture in its own right.
It is said that something like $500 million a year is spent on river-related activities in the tourism sector. Whether you are into boating, canoeing, houseboating, skiing or wakeboarding, there is so much enjoyment that can be had on the river. As long as it is done appropriately and everyone obeys the rules, then everyone enjoys themselves.
There is so much opportunity in regional tourism right across our great state. I have been up north through places like Leigh Creek and Marree and even further south to Rawnsley Park and Wilpena Pound. They are just fantastic. You can stay at Rawnsley Park in accommodation where the roof rolls back. This is better than glamping, I can tell you. You can lie there and look through the see-through roof and look at the stars. It is just magnificent. It is a great delight to go to Wilpena Pound. I have been camping there multiple times. There are so many sites.
As far as domestic travel goes, we should be promoting these sites more and more with what we can do with tourism in this state. What we are doing as a government is investing an extra $21.5 million over four years in the event bid fund to secure more lucrative major events right across South Australia. Certainly, $4.9 million has been directly invested to support the hosting of major events in South Australia, in addition to the increased funding provided for the major event bid fund. I note that we are investing an additional $10 million in 2019-20 to invest in marketing South Australia as a tourism destination to key international and domestic markets, so we are doing what we need to do on this side of the house to promote tourism in all shapes and forms, both domestically and internationally.