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Applications opened on Monday 11th October for the brand new “Major Tourism Experiences Hardship Grant” an initiative arranged by the Queensland Government to support Queensland businesses in the hospitality and tourism sectors that have been impacted by the covid-19 pandemic as a result of ongoing lockdowns and border closures. The initiative also aims to prepare businesses in the sector for an influx of interstate and international tourists when the borders reopen in the foreseeable future.

The grant will distribute up to $4 million to Queensland’s eligible major tourism attractions and experiences who have a turnover for their Queensland located operations of $25 million or more and have consequently experienced significant financial hardship due to the covid-19 pandemic.

It is important for the Queensland Government to provide funding the major tourism experiences hardship grant to support these major tourism attractions and experiences as they play a pivotal role in enticing travelers from both interstate and overseas to visit Queensland for a holiday. These major tourism attractions and experiences also offer plenty of employment opportunities for a large number of Queensland residents.

The program will also enable eligible major tourism businesses an opportunity to support Queensland’s economy recovery, remain operating, retain staff and be prepared for the re-opening of the Queensland borders. 

Major tourism businesses that receive funding under the Major Tourism Experiences Hardship Grant will be ineligible to receive funding under the Tourism and Hospitality Sector Hardship Grant and vice versa.

To be eligible the application must have a turnover of at least $25 million during the 2018-19, 2019-20 or 2020-21 financial year.

For new businesses who are applying such as businesses that have been operating for a period of less than 12 months, their financial records must illustrate that they have an annual turnover of their Queensland bases entities operation of at least 25 million during the 2021-22 financial year.  

To be deemed eligible for the grant the applicant must be either; a business, a business collection or a non-profit organisation.

Applicants are required to also have an Australian Business Number (ABN) continuously held since 30 June 2021, be registered for GST, be trading from premises in Queensland since at least 30 June 2021; and none of the following entities is an insolvent under administration or is under or in receivership or liquidation: (i) the business; (ii) if the owner of the business is a sole trader—the owner; (iii) if an owner of the business is a partnership, private company, public company or trust—the partners in the partnership, directors of the company or trustees of the trust; (iv) an associated entity of an owner of the business.

For businesses that have associated entities as part of a business collection, only one application will be accepted.

Applicants must have experienced a decrease in annual turnover in relation to their Queensland based operations of at 50 percent or more between 1st July 2021 and 30th September 2021 compared against the comparison period.

Applications who are successful in receiving their first payment can submit their eligibility confirmation for their second payment between Monday 11th November and Monday 6th December.

The Grant assistance payable will be made in two equal payments. To receive the Second Payment, approved applicants need to provide confirmation that as of 8 November 2021 the entity is still employing at least one employee in their Queensland operations; remains solvent; and is currently trading from a premises that is located in Queensland.

Application forms must be submitted electronically and will not be accepted in a physical form.

Applications can be submitted via the Queensland Government’s Department of Tourism, Innovation and Sport (DTIS).

Applications opened on Monday 11th October 2021 and will close on Monday 22nd November 2021.