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Department of State Growth

Antarctic sector boosts the economy

Tasmania’s Antarctic and Southern Ocean sector is contributing almost $159 million a year to our local economy according to a new report released by Antarctic Tasmania.  This is $38.4 million more than two years ago.

Its overall economic value is an impressive $229 million per year, which constitutes a 23 per cent increase since 2017-18.

The sector, which provides research, training and support services to the Australian Antarctic program as well as those from around the world, employs almost 950 people locally, up by over 90 full-time equivalent positions on the last time the analysis was done for the 2017-18 financial year.

While taking a hit due to COVID-19 travel restriction in the second half of 2019-20, Australian and international expeditioners still racked up an estimated 7 000 nights stay in Hobart and more than 4 100 nights were spent in Tasmania by delegates of Antarctic and Southern Ocean conferences.

Cementing our reputation as the world’s best Antarctic Gateway, planned investment and development to support the Antarctic sector points to further growth in the economic contribution this sector makes to our local economy.

The imminent arrival of the icebreaker RSV Nuyina, work to establish a proposed Antarctic and Science Precinct at Macquarie Point, our sea and air port services at the Port of Hobart and Hobart Airport, as well as investments in facilities at both Macquarie Island and Davis Station are all primed to bolster our place as the preferred host of Antarctic missions from around the world and gateway to east Antarctica and the southern ocean.

The report analysed information from Australian and Tasmanian government agencies including the Australian Antarctic Division, Antarctic Tasmania, the Bureau of Meteorology, the CSIRO’s Oceans and Atmosphere and National Collections and Marine Infrastructure divisions, as well as UTas, and UTas arms IMAS and AMC.

It also includes national and international government-supported groups, organisations, commissions and research and monitoring services.

View the report here.