The Courier-Mail

Foreign tourists gold medal spenders

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AUSTRALIA’S tourism industry has recorded its best year since the Sydney Olympics, with foreign visitors spending a mammoth $91 million a day.

Chinese tourists accounted for more than a fifth of that expenditur­e, parting with $19 million a day.

Federal Tourism Minister Andrew Robb said the latest Internatio­nal Visitor Survey showed the total spend had grown 10 per cent to $33.4 billion, or $3.2 billion more than the previous year.

He said it was the strongest yearly growth since 2001, the period of the Sydney Games. The result demonstrat­ed that tourism is one of our greatest strengths, Mr Robb said.

The number of American visitors was also a record, up 9 per cent to 544,000, while there were 1.2 million New Zealand visitors, up 3 per cent.

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