Antarctic sector a significant driver for the Tasmanian economy
Tasmania’s Antarctic and Southern Ocean sector contributes almost $159 million a year to the Tasmanian economy according to a new report. In the two years since the last review into the value of the sector (2017-18), economic benefits of Antarctic-related operations in Tasmania have increased by $38.4 million per year.
Total spending in Tasmania has also risen and employment has continued to increase. The sector’s overall economic value is now $229 million per year, an increase or 23 per cent from two years ago.
The sector, which provides research, training, and support services to the Australian Antarctic program and other Antarctic programs from around the world, now employs almost 950 people in Tasmania. Planned investment and development means Tasmania’s Antarctic sector is only likely to see more growth in the future.
Although impacted by COVID-19 travel restrictions in the second half of 2019-20, Australian and international expeditioners still racked up an estimated 7,000 bed-nights in Hobart and more than 4,100 bed-nights were spent in Tasmania by delegates of Antarctic and Southern Ocean conferences.
The Tasmanian Government through its dedicated unit, Antarctic Tasmania and Maritime Industries in the Department of State Growth is committed to growing the contribution of the international Antarctic sector to Tasmania’s economy, community and brand.
Antarctic Tasmania and Maritime Industries works closely with international scientists and sectorial organisations, businesses, and the Australian Government to support and build the Antarctic sector in Tasmania. This includes activities such as:
- assisting visiting Antarctic programs to access the high quality services and products they need in a friendly, environment free of excess regulation
- providing funding and secretariat support to the Tasmanian Polar Network (TPN), a unique cluster of over 70 Tasmanian businesses, research institutions and government agencies with Antarctic and Southern Ocean expertise
- participating in trade missions
- providing policy and strategic advice to the Tasmanian Government on gateway and international Antarctic matters
- supporting the Antarctic gateway infrastructure partnership between the Hobart port and Hobart Airport
- attracting investment support and collaboration opportunities for Tasmanian Antarctic related research institutions
- providing funding and other support for the Commission for the Conservation of Antarctic Marine Living Resources (CCAMLR) and the Agreement for the Conservation of Albatrosses and Petrels (ACAP) secretariats, both located in Hobart
- supporting Australia’s Antarctic program objectives and its international engagement with other national Antarctic programs.