Dear Senior Industry Leaders,
Global death toll from coronavirus surpasses SARS deaths
There are now over 44,000 confirmed cases of the coronavirus across 25 countries. While the death toll now stands at over 1000 people (exceeding the 774 deaths from the SARS epidemic in 2003), almost 5000 people have recovered from the virus. The number of countries reporting confirmed cases of the virus outside of China remains at 25. For more information visit this heat map.
Cruise Lines International Association (CLIA) adopts further screening measures
On 7 February, CLIA ocean-going member cruise lines agreed to adopt further enhanced screening measures intended to address the industry’s exposure to the ongoing coronavirus outbreak. As follows:
- CLIA Members are to deny boarding to all persons who have traveled from, visited or transited via airports in China, including Hong Kong and Macau, within 14 days before embarkation.
- CLIA Members are to deny boarding to all persons who, within 14 days before embarkation, have had close contact with, or helped care for, anyone suspected or diagnosed as having Coronavirus, or who is currently subject to health monitoring for possible exposure to Novel Coronavirus.
- CLIA Members are to conduct preboarding screening necessary to effect these prevention measures. Enhanced screening and initial medical support are to be provided, as needed, to any persons exhibiting symptoms of suspected coronavirus.
Still no WHO recommendation to restrict international travel
The WHO continues to advise against any restrictions on international travel or trade.
More than 44,000 confirmed coronavirus cases in China
The death toll from the virus in mainland China has jumped to over 1000. The infection rate is reported at 2% of cases.
No change to number of confirmed cases in Australia
The number of confirmed cases of the coronavirus in Australia remains at 15: five cases in Queensland, two in South Australia, four in Victoria and four in New South Wales. An additional 11 Australians on board the Diamond Princess cruise ship quarantined in Yokohama have tested positive to the virus and two more are under investigation.
Australian coronavirus travel restrictions to be reviewed by 15 February
The Government has committed to a review of the restrictions by 15 February 2020.
$10m grants program launched to assist bushfire affected regions
On 11 February the Government announced the Regional Tourism Bushfire Recovery Grants program (RTBR), a $10 million program drawn from the National Bushfire Recovery Fund. The program forms part of the Federal Government’s $76 million tourism recovery package to help to protect jobs, small businesses and local economies by helping get tourists travelling to bushfire affected regions. It will have two funding streams which will support events, concerts, festivals and visitor attractions in fire affected regions to assist with recovery efforts and encourage international and domestic visitors to come back to the regions. The second stream will be targeted at the worst affected tourism regions. Austrade will administer the program, which has been developed in consultation with the National Bushfire Recovery Agency. To ensure communities can get access to funds quickly, the first stage of the grants program will focus on grants of up to $30,000, and events up to April 2020 with a streamlined application and assessment process facilitating decisions. Applications will be accepted from Monday 17 February 2020. For further information visit: https://www.austrade.gov.au/Australian/Tourism/Tourism-and-business/Grants/regional-tourism-bushfire-recovery-grants
Tourism Australia collaborating with states and territories on recovery campaigns
We are currently finalising agreements that will see the Federal Government provide state and territory tourism organisations with a significant funding boost to support their marketing efforts to encourage Australians to holiday at home and support the bushfire and coronavirus recovery. TA is providing some funds as part of a dollar for dollar agreement. A number of campaigns have launched or are planned including:
- The South Australian Tourism Commission’s #BookThemOut
- Destination NSW’s ‘Now’s The Time To Love NSW’;
- Tourism and Events Queensland’s ‘It’s a beautiful place to holiday here’;
- Visit Victoria’s ‘A short stay goes a long way’; and
- Tourism NT’s ‘Different in every sense’
Managing Director | Tourism Australia