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WAITOC Media Release - January 2014

Jan 9, 2014 -- Posted by : admin

WAITOC announces first steps in the establishment of a new National Aboriginal and Torres Straits Islands Tourism Body, along with significant increase in interest in WAITOC membership, to round off an impressive 2013

Western Australia Indigenous Tourism Operators Council (WAITOC) Chairman, Doc Reynolds, is pleased to announce the first steps in the establishment of a new National Aboriginal and Torres Straits Islands Tourism Body, with finalized name to be determined by the National Operators in 2014.

Doc Reynolds and Simon Haigh CEO said: “With the endorsement of national Aboriginal tourism operators across Australia, a new National Aboriginal Tourism Body is now being established. It is to be expected that Government and industry will, in 2014, work with the Australian Aboriginal tourism industry to assist in fully scoping, funding and supporting this new landmark national body. WAITOC was of course instrumental in the development of, and of course supports this new National Aboriginal Tourism Body. In so doing, WAITOC will continue to work with this national body in being the peak Aboriginal tourism body for Western Australia”.

Endorsing the establishment of the new National Body, and pictured below with Doc Reynolds is John King, Chairman of ATEC. At their recent meeting in Sydney John King stated that he “Re-affirms ATEC’s commitment to drive forward with a strategic alliance with WAITOC in 2014. This will be a solid demonstration of ATEC’s commitment to the Larrakia Declaration on Aboriginal tourism”.

Likewise, at another recent Tourism Australia and WAITOC meeting in Sydney including outgoing MD of Tourism Australia - Andrew McEvoy and Katherine Droga - GM Destination Development, Tourism Australia expressed its support for the new National Aboriginal Tourism Body. In doing so, Tourism Australia confirmed that it looks forward to working with WAITOC and other key stakeholders through the next steps towards its full establishment and successful operation. As Katherine Droga stated: "In scoping the new National Aboriginal Tourism Body for success, the learnings of the past are critical, especially in that this new body needs to be industry and not Government led”. 

In recapping recent WAITOC media announcements, Simon Haigh, CEO of WAITOC said that “With WAITOC announcing some recent groundbreaking initiatives commencing in 2014, there has been a significant increase in interest in its membership by an impressive 30% of WA based operators in the last quarter of 2013. 2014 and onwards look to be very exciting for Aboriginal tourism in WA and now, with the new National Aboriginal Tourism Body being established, Aboriginal tourism nationally is set to grow to the next level”.

Media Contact:
Mr Simon Haigh – CEO
+61 (0)419 921 946

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