The Queensland racing industry’s annual contribution to the state’s economy has grown by 5.5% to more than $1.6 billion, new economic data has revealed.
Earlier today, Racing Queensland published its 2018/19 Size and Scope Report which was delivered by IER - a specialist in the tourism, events and entertainment industries - and outlines the economic benefit of the racing industry to the Sunshine State.
Since publishing its 2017/18 Report, the Queensland racing industry has seen its value-added contribution to the state’s economy grow to a record-high $1.61 billion.
At the same time, 1,070 extra full-time jobs were created, with the industry now responsible for employing12,643 Queenslanders.
“The Queensland racing industry continues to make enormous strides,” RQ Chairman Steve Wilson AM said.
"This data confirms how dominant our size and scale is compared to other sporting industries, but it’s the way in which we connect people throughout the state which is so important.
“It gives people a thrill and hope to see our beautiful racing animals competing in such picturesque settings.
“From Stanthorpe to Cooktown and everywhere in between, more than $850 million in salaries and wages are earned by Queensland racing participants.
“Importantly, 46% of the $1.6 billion in value added contribution is realised in regional economies, underlining our importance to the state as a whole.
“Across Queensland, there are 62 towns each year who host a raceday as the highlight for that community’s social calendar, showcasing everything that is great about local food, fashion and on-course entertainment.
“Given the challenges of COVID-19, the state’s post-pandemic recovery will impact us all, and racing can play a key role in driving intra-state and inter-state tourism through our incredible events and activities.”
Having published its 2019/20 Annual Report late last month, RQ increased its payments to participants in FY20 to a record-high $223 million – a 8.7% increase on FY19 – with prize money reaching $172 million.
The numbers underpin the strong growth realised as part of the latest Size and Scope Report with highlights including attendances growing to 835,455 patrons.
Across the three codes, thoroughbreds were responsible for $1.25 billion of economic contribution, while greyhounds contributed $191.6 million and harness $159.8 million.
Click here to see the 2018/19 Size and Scope Report of the Queensland racing industry.