Qld government to support superyacht industry with grants

The Queensland government is providing funding to support businesses looking to enter the superyacht services and maintenance industry.

Through the government’s Superyacht Industry Development Fund, matched fundings of up to $19,000 will be available for Queensland businesses to provide construction, maintenance, tourism operations and other services for the superyacht industry.

Many of these services can only be delivered by appropriately skilled and certified businesses. State development and manufacturing minister Cameron Dick said that the government funding would assist enterprises gain industry-related certification, as well as build relationships and connections in the international market which will help them attract business to Queensland.

“We want Queensland to become a leading Pacific superyacht destination, and this funding will help deliver this vision,” Dick said.

“Superyacht owners put considerable time, money and effort into maintaining their superyachts and this is a fantastic opportunity for Queensland businesses to cash in.”

The funding is part of the state’s Superyacht Strategy 2018-23, released earlier this year. Minister Dick said funding of up to $335,000 would be provided over the life of the program to 2023 to support businesses looking to access the industry.

In 2016, the superyacht industry in the Cairns and Whitsundays regions contributed $320 million and around 2660 jobs to the local economies, while, in South-East Queensland, superyacht activity brought $630 million into the state’s economy and supported 4500 jobs. With the help of the fund, the state government expects Cairns and Whitsundays activity to rise to $580 million and around 4500 jobs, and South-East Queensland activity to increase to $1.1 billion and nearly 8000 jobs by 2021.

Chairman of Superyacht Australia Barry Jenkins said the funding would help secure Queensland’s potential as a leading Pacific superyacht destination.

“Queensland has arguably the best year-round cruising ground, refit and maintenance yards and skilled tradespeople in the entire Pacific, and with the upcoming Tokyo Olympics and America’s Cup, the next few years will see more superyachts in our region than at any time previously,” he said.

“This funding and support from the Queensland government will establish Queensland as the dominant destination not only in Australia but in the South Pacific, securing more skilled jobs and economic benefit to small family owned businesses.”