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Thursday, January 27, 2011

Brisbane, Australia's new world city is back to business

Just weeks after the challenge of the recent flood, Brisbane's residents and business community are getting on with the job of recovery and rebuilding at a rapid pace with the collective goal of getting "back to business".

Brisbane Lord Mayor Campbell Newman emphasised the importance of an active business and industry sector in the rebuilding process of the city.
"Despite the recent flood, Brisbane remains an economic powerhouse and we will work with all levels of government and business to ensure the city's speedy economic recovery.

"Brisbane City Council actually expects to see stimulus in Brisbane's economy, particularly in the construction and building sector as the rebuilding continues.

"Our sense of purpose has never been stronger and we're back on track to continue building a prosperous future for residents and the business community," Cr Newman said.

Economic Development and Investment
An emerging global city, Brisbane's $104 billion local economy is driven by a competitive business base and strong population growth.
With strength and resilience as the backbone of the Brisbane economy, Brisbane Marketing, the city's economic development agency will focus on economic recovery and opportunities for growth and investment.

Chief Executive Officer of Brisbane Marketing John Aitken said that with Brisbane's central business district alive with activity, the domestic and international airports operational throughout and the Port of Brisbane open, it's clear that Brisbane is very much back to business.

"The committed citywide effort towards recovery, strong leadership and incredible display of community spirit throughout the crisis has seen Brisbane, Australia's new world city, swiftly get back to business and resume its position as a highly competitive destination for business events, investment, leisure tourism, CBD retail, major events, study and film and television production.

Business Events
"Business events bring in $170 million worth of economic value to Brisbane every year, and $17 billion a year nationally - it is big business - and we are committed to creating economic value for Brisbane through world-class business events," said Mr Aitken.

"I am pleased to report that the vast majority of conference venues and hotels are fully operational with 25 significant conferences proceeding this financial year with an estimated value of $25 million.

"Their doors are open and they're ready to welcome delegates and their families to experience all the city has to offer." "Our support is also with the four Brisbane hotels who are working around the clock to reopen soon".

International Education
International education is the city's largest export contributor to the economy responsible for 2.27 billion dollars in course fees and 13,900 full time jobs in Brisbane.

Mr Aitken said it was very fortunate that only a small number of Brisbane's education providers were directly impacted, and all of the city's world-class universities, English language schools, private colleges and secondary schools are open and ready to resume courses at the start of the 2011 academic year.

"We're continuing to welcome students from around the world and on 05 March the city will host the annual Brisbane Welcomes International Students event and the Lord Mayor will announce our 2011 International Student Ambassadors.

"There's a genuine sense of enthusiasm for the year ahead and Brisbane is primed to deliver an exceptional study experience to students from across the globe."

Leisure Tourism, Major Events and CBD Retail
Worth $9.2 billion annually to the state, leisure tourism is a significant contributor to the Brisbane economy.

"It's great to see the vast majority of local tourism operators, accommodation providers and key attractions throughout the Greater Brisbane region rolling out their welcome mats to visitors across the globe," John Aitken said.

"Brisbane Airport, Australia's second busiest international airport remained open and with recently announced increased connections to China, through China Southern Airlines and to the United States through Qantas, we are seeking to increase visitation from these important markets.
Our major tourism operators including Lone Pine, Riverlife, Story Bridge Adventure Climb, and Tangalooma are all open for business.

"Remember, as a capital city Brisbane offers great shopping, fantastic live entertainment and many delicious opportunities to wine and dine.
"The Queensland Performing Arts Centre is starting to reopen for selected performances including the popular musical Wicked so arts and culture lovers can put this back on their agenda," he said.

There are also many beautiful destinations on Brisbane's doorstep that are ready to welcome visitors. Stradbroke Island, Southern Bay Islands, one of Brisbane's many charming coastal villages or the spectacular Scenic Rim and Country Valleys are all open for business.

"There is still plenty to see and do in Brisbane," Mr Aitken said.

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