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August 29, 2012

Tourism Australia to have more foreign workers to cater to Asian visitors

     Sydney: Officials in Tourism Australia are looking forward to boost the numbers of foreign bar staff, baristas and hotel workers in the country, as numbers Asian visitors are expected to double by 2020. Tourism Australia managing director Andrew McEvoy, while addressing a conference in Melbourne, said that with more than one million Chinese tourists a year tipped to visit Australia by the end of the decade, food should take centre stage, as high quality of food offerings across Australia is often the number one response from visitors. However, Australian Hotels Association CEO Des Crowe warned that to meet the 100,000 shortfall in staffing numbers, thousands of foreign workers would be needed as not enough Australians are willing to fill the jobs. "With unemployment at around 5 per cent it is very difficult to recruit into the hospitality industry and the need for foreign workers is not going to go away. We needed Treasury and the immigration system to address this problem," News.com.au quoted Crowe, as saying. McEvoy backed Crown Casino's decision to aggressively market its Melbourne and Perth venues as a destination for Asian visitors and supported the opening of a six-star hotel/casino in the new Barangaroo district in Sydney . "We should take our MasterChef infatuation and demonstrate it to the world. Australians have access to great produce and do great things with it. People who come and visit put it up there as one of the top food experiences anywhere in the world," McEvoy said. "Shopping, dining and entertainment are what the Crown complexes are all about and that is what Asian tourists want,'' he added. Tourism Australia rates Chinese visitors as the "first among equals'' as they are tipped to deliver more than 40 per cent of the growth in tourism numbers over the next eight years, the report said.
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