State Tourism Satellite Account 2019–20

State Tourism Satellite Account 2019–20

About this report

The State Tourism Satellite Account (STSA) highlights the importance of tourism to each state and territory's economy.

The 2019–20 edition of the STSA is the first to capture the impacts of the bushfires and the early months of COVID-19 at a state and territory level. It sheds light on where the impacts were felt most deeply. Key data covers:

  • consumption
  • employment
  • economic activity.

We use the Australian Bureau of Statistics’ Tourism Satellite Account and Labour Force Survey data.

We extend the work of the ABS by examining state and territory tourism performance.

Read about how we apply the data in the Methodology.

Disruptions to the tourism sector

COVID-19 has delivered the largest shock the Australian tourism industry has ever experienced. Every part of the industry has been affected. The industry has shown resilience in the past to social, environmental and economic shocks. However, COVID-19 has been a far greater challenge.

Results July to December 2019

Tourism’s performance for the first half of the financial year was consistent with the strong growth of the last decade. Compared to the same period in 2018–19:

  • international visitors increased by 2%, with spend in Australia increasing by 4%
  • domestic overnight visitors increased by 8%, with spend increasing by 8%
  • domestic day trips increased by 20%, with spend increasing by 17%.

Results January to June 2020

For the second half of the year, the sector experienced a series of shocks:

  • bushfire devastation over the Christmas and New Year period
  • global breakout of COVID-19
  • international border closures
  • state border closures
  • local lockdowns
  • mobility restrictions
  • social distancing
  • local COVID-19 clusters (especially community transmission).

This led to dramatic declines in tourism demand compared to the same period in 2018–19:

  • international visitors fell by 60%, with spend falling by 53%
  • domestic overnight visitors fell by 43%, with spend falling by 45%
  • domestic day trip visitors fell by 34%, with spend falling by 32%.

Tourism consumption

All states and territories experienced falls in consumption due to COVID-19. Nationally, consumption fell by 19%, or $29.5 billion. This is in contrast to average annual growth of 5% per year in the decade prior to COVID-19.

Falls in consumption:

  • New South Wales (NSW) – down $9.6 billion or 20% (from $46.7 billion to $37.1 billion)
  • Victoria (Vic) – down $7.1 billion or 20% (from $36.3 billion to $29.2 billion)
  • Queensland (Qld) – down $6.7 billion or 19% (from $34.7 billion to $28.1 billion)
  • Western Australia (WA) – down $2.2 billion or 14% (from $15.1 billion to $13.0 billion)
  • South Australia (SA) – down $1.4 billion or 16% (from $9.0 billion to $7.6 billion)
  • Northern Territory (NT) – down $871 million or 28% (from $3.2 billion to $2.3 billion)
  • Australian Capital Territory (ACT) – down $867 million or 28% (from $3.1 billion to $2.2 billion)
  • Tasmania (Tas) – down $818 million or 18% (from $4.5 billion to $3.7 billion).

Falls in consumption were recorded across all categories of travel:

  • day trips
  • domestic overnight
  • international.

For states and territories, the main causes were declines in:

  • overnight spend for Qld, Tas and WA
  • interstate spend for ACT and SA
  • intrastate and international spend for NSW and Vic
  • intrastate and interstate spend for NT.

Gross State Product (GSP) and Gross Value Added (GVA) from tourism

Total tourism GVA for 2019–20 was $46.5 billion, down 17% on 2018–19.

Total tourism GSP fell a similar amount across the states and territories. This was down 18% to $50.4 billion. By comparison the Australian economy grew by 1.7% in 2019–20. As a result, tourism’s share of the national economy fell from 3.1% in 2018–19 to 2.5%. Similar to consumption, these falls in GVA and GSP were uneven across states and territories.

Tourism GVA and GSP by state, 2019–20
State GVA (billions) Change on 2018–19 GSP (billions) Change on 2018–19
NSW $14.0 -18% $15.2 -18%
Vic $11.1 -18% $12.0 -19%
Qld $10.5 -18% $11.4 -18%
SA $2.9 -13% $3.1 -13%
WA $5.0 -11% $5.4 -11%
Tas $1.4 -14% $1.5 -15%
NT $0.792 -26% $0.869 -25%
ACT $0.847 -27% $0.915 -27%
Total $46.5 -17% $50.4 -18%

Tourism employment results

The employment data cover direct, indirect and state and territory results.

Considerations on employment data

The employment numbers are an average for the full financial year and do not reflect the severity of the current situation. This is due to:

  • many tourism employees remaining on company payrolls while on JobKeeper support
  • tourism recovering more slowly than other parts of the economy due to COVID-19 travel restrictions.

Direct and indirect employment

Tourism directly employed 621,100 people in 2019–20. This was down 7% compared with 2018–19. Falls ranged from 0.3% for SA to 16% for the ACT.

Indirect employment declined more sharply than direct employment. Falls ranged from 16% for WA to 28% for NT. As a result, tourism’s direct share of employment in Australia fell from 5.2% to 4.8%. Over this same period Australia’s workforce grew 0.1%.

Tourism employment by state, 2019–20

State
Persons directly employed in 2019–20
(thousands)
Change on 2018–19 Persons indirectly employed in 2019–20
(thousands)
Change on 2018–19
NSW 175.1 -8.5% 81.0 -22.7%
Vic 166.5 -7.4% 65.5 -21.6%
Qld 135.9 -6.3% 70.7 -20.7%
SA 40.4 -0.3% 19.2 -17.6%
WA 65.8 -1.1% 29.0 -15.6%
Tas 21.0 -5.4% 16.3 -22.1%
NT 7.3 -12.1% 5.2 -28.4%
ACT 9.2 -16.4% 5.5 -27.5%
Total 621.1 -6.6% 292.4 -21.1%

Direct employment by sector nationally

While tourism cuts across 12 different industries, just 4 industries accounted for almost three quarters of all direct employment nationally. These were:

  • Food services – 33% share
  • Retail – 17%
  • Accommodation – 12%
  • Transport – 11%.

State and territory employment

Tourism employment in states and territories follow similar patterns to the national sector breakdown. Notable exceptions include:

  • NT had a lower than average share of food services employment, but higher share of transport employment. It also had the lowest share of travel agent employment.
  • Similar to NT, Qld also had a lower than average share of employment in food services, and higher share in transport.
  • Vic had higher than average share of food services employment.
  • ACT had a higher than average share of employment in accommodation.
  • Tas had a higher share of people working in transport.

Changes in the tourism workforce through the pandemic

Quarterly labour force statistics from the ABS show there has been significant change in the tourism workforce during the pandemic:

  • tourism jobs peaked at 744,900 jobs in the December quarter 2019
  • they then fell 19% over the first six months of 2020 to 606,400 jobs
  • tourism jobs then increased 9.6% in the December quarter 2020 to 664,400 jobs.

Part-time jobs in tourism exceeded full-time jobs for the first time on record:

  • In June quarter 2020 the majority of job losses were among part-time tourism workers (down 24%). Full-time jobs were down 8.4%.
  • In the December quarter 2020 part-time employment growth was stronger (up 5.9%) than full-time employment (up 4.3%).

These changes in workforce structure are likely due to:

  • some full-time workers leaving the industry or shifting to part-time as demand reduced in many parts of Australia
  • regions with increased demand recruiting more part-time workers
  • some part-time workers returning to the industry.

Australian Capital Territory tourism summary

 

Gross State Product (GSP)


$1.8 billion
Down 27.9% compared with 2018–19

Gross Value Added (GVA)


$1.6 billion
Down 28.1% compared with 2018–19

Employment


14,700 persons
Down 20.9% compared with 2018–19

 

Tourism GSP

In 2019–20 (compared to 2018–19):

  • direct tourism GSP in the ACT was worth $0.915 billion (down 27.1%)
    • this was a 2.2% direct share of total state GSP (down 0.8 percentage points)
    • total state GSP was worth $41.5 billion
  • Indirect tourism GSP was worth an extra $0.917 billion to the ACT’s economy (down 28.6%)
  • total tourism GSP (both direct and indirect) was worth $1.8 billion to the ACT’s economy (down 27.9%).

Tourism GVA 

In 2019–20 (compared to 2018–19):

  • direct tourism GVA in the ACT was worth $0.847 billion (down 26.9%)
    • this was a 2.2% direct share of total state GVA (down 0.9 percentage points)
    • total state GVA was worth $39.3 billion (up 3.6%)
  • indirect tourism GVA was worth an extra $0.771 billion to the ACT’s economy (down 29.3%)
  • total tourism GVA (both direct and indirect) was worth $1.6 billion to the ACT’s economy (down 28.1%).

Tourism employment 

In 2019–20 (compared to 2018–19):

  • direct tourism employment in the ACT accounted for 9,200 employees (down 16.4%)
    • this was a 3.9% direct share of total state employment (down 0.9 percentage points)
    • total state employment amounted to 233,000 employees (up 2.5%)
  • indirect tourism accounted for 5,500 employees in the ACT (down 27.5%)
  • total tourism employment (both direct and indirect) accounted for 14,700 employees in the ACT (down 20.9%).

Notes

What is direct contribution?

Money spent directly in the tourism industry. Without a tourism industry in the ACT, this money wouldn’t be generated, or these people wouldn’t be employed.  

What is indirect contribution?

The flow-on effect of the tourism industry. In the ACT, for every dollar spent in the tourism industry, an additional 77 cents were spent elsewhere in the economy. 

Why we use GVA 

GVA allows easier comparisons across industries. GVA is equal to GSP minus taxes. 

New South Wales tourism summary

 

Gross State Product (GSP)


$30.2 billion
Down 21.0% compared with 2018–19

Gross Value Added (GVA)


$27.0 billion
Down 20.9% compared with 2018–19

Employment


256,100 persons
Down 13.5% compared with 2018–19

 

Tourism GSP

In 2019–20 (compared to 2018–19):

  • direct tourism GSP in NSW was worth $15.2 billion (down 18.4%)
    • this was a 2.4% direct share of total state GSP (down 0.6 percentage points)
    • total state GSP was worth $629.3 billion (up 0.6%)
  • indirect tourism GSP was worth an extra $15.0 billion to NSW’s economy (down 23.6%)
  • total tourism GSP (both direct and indirect) was worth $30.2 billion to NSW’s economy (down 21.0%).

Tourism GVA

In 2019–20 (compared to 2018–19):

  • direct tourism GVA in NSW was worth $14.0 billion (down 18.1%)
    • this was a 2.4% direct share of total state GVA (down 0.6 percentage points)
    • total state GVA was worth $583.2 billion (up 1.1%)
  • indirect tourism GVA was worth an extra $13.0 billion to NSW’s economy (down 23.7%)
  • total tourism GVA (both direct and indirect) was worth $27.0 billion to NSW’s economy (down 20.9%).

Tourism employment

In 2019–20 (compared to 2018–19):

  • direct tourism employment in NSW accounted for 175,000 employees (down 8.5%)
    • this was a 4.3% direct share of total state employment (down 0.4 percentage points)
    • total state employment amounted to 4.1 million employees (down 0.5%)
  • indirect tourism accounted for 81,000 employees in NSW (down 22.7%)
  • total tourism employment (both direct and indirect) accounted for 256,000 employees in NSW (down 13.5%).

Notes

What is direct contribution?

Money spent directly in the tourism industry. Without a tourism industry in NSW, this money wouldn’t be generated, or these people wouldn’t be employed.  

What is indirect contribution?

The flow-on effect of the tourism industry. In NSW, for every dollar spent in the tourism industry, an additional 81 cents were spent elsewhere in the economy. 

Why we use GVA 

GVA allows easier comparisons across industries. GVA is equal to GSP minus taxes. 

Northern Territory tourism summary

 

Gross State Product (GSP)


$1.9 billion
Down 28.1% compared with 2018–19

Gross Value Added (GVA)


$1.6 billion
Down 27.8% compared with 2018–19

Employment


12,500 persons
Down 19.7% compared with 2018–19

 

Tourism GSP 

In 2019–20 (compared to 2018–19):

  • direct tourism GSP in the NT was worth $0.869 billion (down 25.3%)
    • this was a 3.3% direct share of total state GSP (down 0.9 percentage points)
    • total state GSP was worth $25.9 billion (down 5.7%)
  • indirect tourism GSP was worth an extra $1.0 billion to the NT’s economy (down 30.3%)
  • total tourism GSP (both direct and indirect) was worth $1.9 billion to the NT’s economy (down 28.1%).

Tourism GVA 

In 2019–20 (compared to 2018–19):

  • direct tourism GVA in the NT was worth $0.792 billion (down 25.8%)
    • this was a 3.2% direct share of total state GVA (down 1.3 percentage points)
    • total state GVA was worth $24.8 billion (up 4.9%)
  • indirect tourism GVA was worth an extra $0.784 billion to the NT’s economy (down 29.7%)
  • total tourism GVA (both direct and indirect) was worth $1.6 billion to the NT’s economy (down 27.8%).

Tourism employment 

In 2019–20 (compared to 2018–19):

  • direct tourism employment in the NT accounted for 7,300 employees (down 12.1%)
    • this was a 5.6% direct share of total state employment (down 0.7 percentage points)
    • total state employment amounted to 131,000 employees (down 0.4%)
  • indirect tourism accounted for 5,200 employees in the NT (down 28.4%)
  • total tourism employment (both direct and indirect) accounted for 12,500 employees in the NT (down 19.7%).

Notes

What is direct contribution?

Money spent directly in the tourism industry. Without a tourism industry in the NT, this money wouldn’t be generated, or these people wouldn’t be employed.  

What is indirect contribution?

The flow-on effect of the tourism industry. In NT, for every dollar spent in the tourism industry, an additional 77 cents were spent elsewhere in the economy. 

Why we use GVA 

GVA allows easier comparisons across industries. GVA is equal to GSP minus taxes. 

Queensland tourism summary

 

Gross State Product (GSP)


$22.7 billion
Down 20.0% compared with 2018–19

Gross Value Added (GVA)


$20.3 billion
Down 19.9% compared with 2018–19

Employment


206,600 persons
Down 11.8% compared with 2018–19

 

Tourism GSP 

In 2019–20 (compared to 2018–19):

  • direct tourism GSP in Qld was worth $11.4 billion (down 18.1%)
    • this was a 3.2% direct share of total state GSP (down 0.6 percentage points)
    • total state GSP was worth $361.0 billion (down 2.3%)
  • indirect tourism GSP was worth an extra $11.3 billion to Qld’s economy (down 21.9%)
  • total tourism GSP (both direct and indirect) was worth $22.7 billion to Qld’s economy (down 20.0%).

Tourism GVA 

In 2019–20 (compared to 2018–19):

  • direct tourism GVA in Qld was worth $10.5 billion (down 17.9%)
    • this was a 3.1% direct share of total state GVA (down 0.6 percentage points)
    • total state GVA was worth $338.8 billion (down 2.6%)
  • indirect tourism GVA was worth an extra $9.9 billion to Qld’s economy (down 21.9%)
  • total tourism GVA (both direct and indirect) was worth $20.3 billion to Qld’s economy (down 19.9%).

Tourism employment 

In 2019–20 (compared to 2018–19):

  • direct tourism employment in Qld accounted for 135,900 employees (down 6.3%)
    • this was a 5.4% direct share of total state employment (down 0.4 percentage points)
    • total state employment amounted to 2.5 million employees (up 0.3%)
  • indirect tourism accounted for 70,700 employees in Qld (down 20.7%)
  • total tourism employment (both direct and indirect) accounted for 206,600 employees in Qld (down 11.8%).

Notes

What is direct contribution?

Money spent directly in the tourism industry. Without a tourism industry in Qld, this money wouldn’t be generated, or these people wouldn’t be employed.  

What is indirect contribution?

The flow-on effect of the tourism industry. In Qld, for every dollar spent in the tourism industry, an additional 82 cents were spent elsewhere in the economy. 

Why we use GVA 

GVA allows easier comparisons across industries. GVA is equal to GSP minus taxes. 

South Australia tourism summary

 

Gross State Product (GSP)


$6.5 billion
Down 16.7% compared with 2018–19

Gross Value Added (GVA)


$5.5 billion
Down 16.1% compared with 2018–19

Employment


59,600 persons
Down 6.6% compared with 2018–19

 

Tourism GSP 

In 2019–20 (compared to 2018–19):

  • direct tourism GSP in SA was worth $3.1 billion (down 13.4%)
    • this was a 2.8% direct share of total state GSP (down 0.4 percentage points)
    • total state GSP was worth $110.6 billion (up 0.2%)
  • indirect tourism GSP was worth an extra $3.4 billion to SA’s economy (down 19.5%)
  • total tourism GSP (both direct and indirect) was worth $6.5 billion to SA’s economy (down 16.7%).

Tourism GVA 

In 2019–20 (compared to 2018–19):

  • direct tourism GVA in SA was worth $2.9 billion (down 13.2%)
    • this was a 2.8% direct share of total state GVA (down 0.4 percentage points)
    • total state GVA was worth $103.0 billion (up 0.7%)
  • indirect tourism GVA was worth an extra $2.6 billion to SA’s economy (down 19.0%)
  • total tourism GVA (both direct and indirect) was worth $5.5 billion to SA’s economy (down 16.1%).

Tourism employment 

In 2019–20 (compared to 2018–19):

  • direct tourism employment in SA accounted for 40,400 employees (down 0.3%)
    • this was a 4.8% direct share of total state employment (no change)
    • total state employment amounted to 841,000 employees (down 0.7%)
  • indirect tourism accounted for 19,200 employees in SA (down 17.6%)
  • total tourism employment (both direct and indirect) accounted for 59,600 employees in SA (down 6.6%).

Notes

What is direct contribution?

Money spent directly in the tourism industry. Without a tourism industry in SA, this money wouldn’t be generated, or these people wouldn’t be employed.  

What is indirect contribution?

The flow-on effect of the tourism industry. In SA, for every dollar spent in the tourism industry, an additional 79 cents were spent elsewhere in the economy. 

Why we use GVA 

GVA allows easier comparisons across industries. GVA is equal to GSP minus taxes. 

Tasmania tourism summary

 

Gross State Product (GSP)


$3.0 billion
Down 18.3% compared with 2018–19

Gross Value Added (GVA)


$2.7 billion
Down 17.8% compared with 2018–19

Employment


37,400 persons
Down 13.5% compared with 2018–19

 

Tourism GSP 

In 2019–20 (compared to 2018–19):

  • direct tourism GSP in Tas was worth $1.5 billion (down 14.7%)
    • this was a 4.6% direct share of total state GSP (down 0.8 percentage points)
    • total state GSP was worth $32.9 billion (up 1.1%)
  • indirect tourism GSP was worth an extra $1.5 billion to Tas’ economy (down 21.8%)
  • total tourism GSP (both direct and indirect) was worth $3.0 billion to Tas’ economy (down 18.3%).

Tourism GVA 

In 2019–20 (compared to 2018–19):

  • direct tourism GVA in Tas was worth $1.4 billion (down 14.2%)
    • this was a 4.5% direct share of total state GVA (down 0.8 percentage points)
    • total state GVA was worth $30.8 billion (up 2.0%)
  • indirect tourism GVA was worth an extra $1.3 billion to Tas’ economy (down 21.3%)
  • total tourism GVA (both direct and indirect) was worth $2.7 billion to Tas’ economy (down 17.8%).

Tourism employment 

In 2019–20 (compared to 2018–19):

  • direct tourism employment in Tas accounted for 21,000 employees (down 5.4%)
    • this was a 8.4% direct share of total state employment (down 0.5 percentage points)
    • total state employment amounted to 251,000 employees (up 0.7%)
  • indirect tourism accounted for 16,300 employees in Tas (down 22.1%)
  • total tourism employment (both direct and indirect) accounted for 37,400 employees in Tas (down 13.5%).

Notes

What is direct contribution?

Money spent directly in the tourism industry. Without a tourism industry in Tas, this money wouldn’t be generated, or these people wouldn’t be employed.  

What is indirect contribution?

The flow-on effect of the tourism industry. In Tas, for every dollar spent in the tourism industry, an additional 80 cents were spent elsewhere in the economy. 

Why we use GVA 

GVA allows easier comparisons across industries. GVA is equal to GSP minus taxes. 

Victoria tourism summary

 

Gross State Product (GSP)


$23.4 billion
Down 20.7% compared with 2018–19

Gross Value Added (GVA)


$21.2 billion
Down 20.6% compared with 2018–19

Employment


232,000 persons
Down 11.9% compared with 2018–19

 

Tourism GSP 

In 2019–20 (compared to 2018–19):

  • direct tourism GSP in Vic was worth $12.0 billion (down 18.6%)
    • this was a 2.6% direct share of total state GSP (down 0.7 percentage points)
    • total state GSP was worth $467.9 billion (up 2.9%)
  • indirect tourism GSP was worth an extra $11.4 billion to Vic’s economy (down 22.8%)
  • total tourism GSP (both direct and indirect) was worth $23.4 billion to Vic’s economy (down 20.7%).

Tourism GVA

In 2019–20 (compared to 2018–19):

  • direct tourism GVA in Vic was worth $11.1 billion (down 18.4%)
    • this was a 2.6% direct share of total state GVA (down 0.6 percentage points)
    • total state GVA was worth $433.7 billion (up 1.8%)
  • indirect tourism GVA was worth an extra $10.1 billion to Vic’s economy (down 22.9%)
  • total tourism GVA (both direct and indirect) was worth $21.2 billion to Vic’s economy (down 20.6%).

Tourism employment 

In 2019–20 (compared to 2018–19):

  • direct tourism employment in Vic accounted for 166,500 employees (down 7.4%)
    • this was a 4.9% direct share of total state employment (down 0.4 percentage points)
    • total state employment amounted to 3.4 million employees (up 0.9%)
  • indirect tourism accounted for 65,500 employees in Vic (down 21.6%)
  • total tourism employment (both direct and indirect) accounted for 232,000 employees in Vic (down 11.9%).

Notes

What is direct contribution?

Money spent directly in the tourism industry. Without a tourism industry in Vic, this money wouldn’t be generated, or these people wouldn’t be employed.  

What is indirect contribution?

The flow-on effect of the tourism industry. In Vic, for every dollar spent in the tourism industry, an additional 80 cents were spent elsewhere in the economy. 

Why we use GVA 

GVA allows easier comparisons across industries. GVA is equal to GSP minus taxes. 

Western Australia tourism summary

 

Gross State Product (GSP)


$10.5 billion
Down 13.9% compared with 2018–19

Gross Value Added (GVA)


$9.5 billion
Down 13.8% compared with 2018–19

Employment


94,800 persons
Down 6.0% compared with 2018–19

 

Tourism GSP

In 2019–20 (compared to 2018–19):

  • direct tourism GSP in WA was worth $5.4 billion (down 11.2%)
    • this was a 1.7% direct share of total state GSP (down 0.4 percentage points)
    • total state GSP was worth $316.3 billion (up 10.8%)
  • indirect tourism GSP was worth an extra $5.1 billion to WA’s economy (down 16.6%)
  • total tourism GSP (both direct and indirect) was worth $10.5 billion to WA’s economy (down 13.9%).

Tourism GVA

In 2019–20 (compared to 2018–19):

  • direct tourism GVA in WA was worth $5.0 billion (down 10.8%)
    • this was a 1.6% direct share of total state GVA (down 0.4 percentage points)
    • total state GVA was worth $305.2 billion (up 11.2%)
  • indirect tourism GVA was worth an extra $4.5 billion to WA’s economy (down 16.8%)
  • total tourism GVA (both direct and indirect) was worth $9.5 billion to WA’s economy (down 13.8%).

Tourism employment

  • direct tourism employment in WA accounted for 65,800 employees (down 1.1%)
    • this was a 4.9% direct share of total state employment (down 0.1 percentage points)
    • total state employment amounted to 1.3 million employees (no change)
  • indirect tourism accounted for 29,000 employees in WA (down 15.6%)
  • total tourism employment (both direct and indirect) accounted for 94,800 employees in WA (down 6.0%).

Notes

What is direct contribution?

Money spent directly in the tourism industry. Without a tourism industry in WA, this money wouldn’t be generated, or these people wouldn’t be employed.  

What is indirect contribution?

The flow-on effect of the tourism industry. In WA, for every dollar spent in the tourism industry, an additional 78 cents were spent elsewhere in the economy. 

Why we use GVA 

GVA allows easier comparisons across industries. GVA is equal to GSP minus taxes. 

Data tables

Find out more about tourism consumption, employment and economic activity in our data tables.

Explanatory notes

Revisions to the Australian Bureau of Statistics’ (ABS) national accounts data have affected the State TSA. These data are revised annually by the ABS to reflect changes in the economy. This is in line with international best practice. In this edition of the State TSA, revisions only apply to data from 2017–18 onwards. This means you cannot compare this data with data from previous editions.

Regional expenditure data revisions also have affected the State TSA. These data are sourced from the International Visitor Survey (IVS) and National Visitor Survey (NVS), year ending June 2020.

Methodology

The 2019–20 State TSA publication presents a comprehensive set of data on the direct and indirect economic contribution of tourism for all states and territories. It builds on the Australian Bureau of Statistics’ (ABS) National TSA.

The report highlights changes in 2019–20, in nominal terms. It also examines longer term patterns in tourism’s contribution to the national, state and territory economies.

ABS System of National Accounts

The ABS System of National Accounts (SNA) does not capture tourism as a single industry, despite it being a high value contributor to Australia’s economy. This is due to the sector’s diverse products and services.
The National TSA bridges this gap by:

  • measuring the economic contribution of tourism
  • supplementing the SNA.

Comparisons can then be made between:

  • the tourism industry’s economic contribution, and
  • conventional industries’ contribution within an economy.

Tourism sectors across different countries can also be compared.

Check the ABS’ Australian National Accounts: Tourism Satellite Account methodology for more information on the National TSA.

Sources for data and methodology

The approach in the State TSA is to derive the direct contribution of tourism. It is similar to the approach developed by Pham et al. (2009). Tourism spend data and state/territory industry input-output (I-O) data are combined with the National TSA benchmark. This is to capture the:

  • supply of tourism at the state/territory level
  • demand for tourism at the state/territory level.

The main sources for the data and methodology are:

  • unpublished modelled regional expenditure data from Tourism Research Australia’s:
    • International Visitor Survey (IVS)
    • National Visitor Survey (NVS).
  • I-O database from The Enormous Regional Model (Horridge, Madden & Wittwer, 2003).
  • National TSA produced by the ABS (2019).
  • Pham, T.D., L. Dwyer and R. Spurr (2009) ‘Constructing a regional TSA: The case of Queensland’, Tourism Analysis, 13, 5/6, pp. 445-460.
  • Pham, T.D. and Dwyer, L. (2013), ‘Tourism Satellite Account and Its applications in CGE Modelling’, in Tisdell (ed), The Handbook of Tourism Economics – Analysis, New Applications and Case Studies, Chapter 22, World Scientific Publishing.
  • Dwyer, L. and Pham, T.D. (2012), ‘CGE Modeling’, in Dwyer, Gill and Seetaram (eds), Research Methods in Tourism, Chapter 13, Edward Elgar Publishing.

Reconciling data

When reconciling the State TSA data to the national target:

  • regional spend patterns are maintained
  • summing conditions between state/territory and national levels are satisfied.

Indirect and total contribution of tourism

Indirect effects of tourism demand on businesses that provide goods and services to the tourism industry are also measured. For example, the indirect tourism demand generated from supplying a meal to a visitor. This starts with production of what the restaurant needs to make the meal. This might include fresh produce and electricity for cooking.

This approach complements the direct effects presented through the TSA framework. It provides a clearer picture of the total contribution of tourism to the economy. However, they have been calculated using I-O analysis methods. This is because the TSA framework is not designed to measure these indirect effects at state and territory level.

The I-O analysis methods provide a breakdown of the supply and demand of commodities in the Australian economy.

Multipliers for calculating tourism’s indirect effects

Multipliers for standard industries in the Australian and New Zealand Standard Industry Classification (ANZSIC) are used as the basis for calculating tourism’s indirect effects. This is because the tourism sector does not represent a single industry in the economy.

The multipliers measure the individual contribution of industries associated with supplying goods and services to tourists. They provide estimates of the flow-on effects for:

  • tourism output
  • tourism GVA
  • tourism GSP
  • tourism employment.

The TERM I-O database also derives the:

  • equivalent state and territory output multipliers
  • state specific industry level GVA to output
  • employment to output ratios.

This database is widely used in Australia. It is the only source available for this information at the state and territory level.

Regional expenditure

State TSA data are based on TRA modelled regional expenditure estimates. These were derived from IVS and NVS data.

The survey data are allocated to tourism regions using an iterative procedure (TRA, 2013). It takes into account visitors’ reported expenditure on their entire trip in Australia, relative to the nights they spend in different tourism regions in Australia.

Estimates derived from the regional expenditure model show there are large differences in spend patterns across states and territories. As a key input to the State TSA, they are an important contributor in shaping the patterns evident in:

  • the estimates of each state and territory
  • the shares attributed to specific tourism-characteristic and tourism-connected industries in each state and territory.

Note that the modelled regional expenditure figures are derived from survey data, and there can be some volatility in these estimates. This is particularly the case for:

  • smaller states and territories
  • spend categories with lower levels of spend.

Modelled tourism expenditure estimates

The State TSA uses modelled tourism expenditure estimates as an input. These are measured at purchasers’ prices. This includes the following components that are not directly related to industries producing goods and services for tourism purposes:

  • imports
  • wholesale, retail margins, and transport margins
  • net commodity taxes.

Tourism consumption

Consumption represents the demand side of tourism, with visitors paying a final price for goods and services. It is mostly measured in purchasers’ prices in this report. This is to reflect the full price paid by tourists for goods and services. Most consumption data in the National Account and State TSA are presented in the same way.

However, it is necessary to use consumption measured at basic prices to measure flow-on effects correctly. If consumption were measured at purchasers’ prices, flow-on effects would be over-estimated by values (such as imports), which are not directly related to domestic production.

Tourism output

Tourism output measures how much demand is satisfied by domestic industries. Often, output is less than total consumption (at purchasers’ prices). This is due to the amount of:

  • imports
  • commodity taxes
  • any associated margins needed to facilitate the transfer of goods and services from producers to tourists.

Good examples of this include road and rail transport, and the wholesale and retail sectors.

Only consumption at basic prices is equal to output of the producing industry. This is because all add-on components paid by the consumers are removed (noting the amounts of margins that are re-allocated to the applicable industries to reflect their contribution to tourism consumption explicitly).

Note that in the basic prices category, not all goods and services are now defined as direct output in the new TSA framework. The output of an industry is defined as direct tourism output only when the industry has physical contact with tourists. For example, cafés, restaurants and accommodation.

Items like fuel are not direct tourism outputs. For example, if a tourist spends $98 to fill up their petrol tank, and:

  • the cost of fuel is $80
  • the cost to run the petrol station is $18.

In this case only $18 is recorded as direct tourism output associated with the retail industry. The remaining $80 is considered to be the cost to the retailer of the domestic good sold to tourists. This would be captured in the flow-on effects to account for the value-adding tourism has generated in the domestic economy.

Glossary

Read the TSA glossary in the National TSA Methodology on the ABS website.

Contact us

Email tourism.research@tra.gov.au