Newcastle’s economic success has been linked to major events following a report from global accountancy firm Ernest & Young. The report found major events have extensive support from local businesses and residents. The report also revealed the Supercars Newcastle 500 delivering an average of $36.2 million in economic output and 149 jobs.
The report conducted for the City of Newcastle found more two thirds of residents and businesses believe the advantages of major events outweigh any negative impacts.
Lord Mayor Nuatali Nelmes believes events are important to City of Newcastle’s vision of being a vibrant emerging global city.
“Newcastle’s position as an events city has been growing since the early days of Surfest in the 1980s, but it was only after delivering our first Newcastle 500 in 2017 that the rest of Australia has really taken notice,” Cr Nelmes said.
“Major events in Newcastle, be they motor racing, music festivals or world-class surfing, are here by design, not by chance. On the back of research like the EY reports, we’ll continue working to build Newcastle’s position as a global events city.”
The Newcastle 500 was announced to have the highest turnover, for both local businesses and accommodation providers in the region. CN’s annual budget for the Newcastle 500 (including a licence fee to Destination NSW and services provided to Supercars) is $1.6 million, which means for every $1 of ratepayers’ money invested in the race, $22.60 is returned to the local economy.
More than 80 percent of residents said major events are a benefit for the city, while 60 percent were either supportive or neutral about the Newcastle 500 continuing. 96 percent of accommodation providers outside of Newcastle believe major events deliver benefits to the region.
Business Hunter CEO Bob Hawes believes the return of major events to Newcastle is something to look forward to.
“Events bring a significant amount of economic stimulus, particularly through the visitor and hospitality sectors, which are those that are hurting the most right now because of COVID-19,” Mr Hawes said.