Transport and tourism key to economy

Maeve BannisterAAP
Anthony Albanese says a Labor government would restore Australia's self-sufficiency.
Camera IconAnthony Albanese says a Labor government would restore Australia's self-sufficiency. Credit: AAP

Opposition Leader Anthony Albanese says "a future made in Australia" will be key to the nation's economic recovery after COVID-19.

The future of tourism and transport - sectors hit hard during the pandemic - was the focus of a leadership summit attended by Mr Albanese and Communications Minister Paul Fletcher on Friday.

In a keynote address, Mr Albanese took aim at the government's slow vaccine rollout and failure to establish a purpose-built quarantine facility, saying it prolonged the suffering of the tourism and transport industries.

He said a Labor government led by him would restore Australia's self-sufficiency and provide a genuine plan for the transport sector.

"Australia needs to be a nation that makes things," he told the Tourism and Transport Forum event in Sydney.

He said one of the first acts of his government would be to hold an Australian jobs summit and develop an employment white paper to boost sectors struggling with labour shortages.

Meanwhile, Mr Fletcher told the summit the government was committed to funding regional cultural tourism and providing grants to decrease risk for event organisers.

"The arts generates activity," he said.

He said the new airport in western Sydney, due to open by 2026, would attract tourists as well as provide jobs and was confident the tourism sector would be "back on track" by then.

While declining to reveal specifics of the next federal budget, he said the government recognised the importance of the transport and tourism sectors.

"It is very important these engines of prosperity continue to fire up and we are giving it a focus," he said.

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