Queensland State Government has offered business owners which have been hit hard by the coronavirus a share in more than $27 million in assistance.

The initiative is the biggest and richest package of measures offered by any government in Australia.

Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk said the economic impact on Queensland’s tourism, agriculture, fishing and education sectors is comparable to any natural disaster.

“The overnight downturn in Chinese tourists, students and export markets is having enormous impact,” Ms Palaszczuk said.

“This $27.25 million is a way of addressing some of those losses and setting us up for recovery once the virus is contained.”

Highlights include:

  • $7 million in international tourism promotion
  • $4.8 million targeted for the Tropical Far North and Gold Coast regions
  • Waiving fees for fishers
  • Waiving fees associated with liquor licences
  • Deferring tourism lease payments
  • Rebates for marina and jetty fees
  • Waiving quota fees for rock lobster and coral trout

Ms Palaszczuk said these were practical and immediate measures but more needs to be done.

“Federal support would allow us to provide a $2000 resilience grant for up to 6000 small business owners and it would trigger $700,000 in export grants for small to medium enterprises allowing them to travel to China and reconnect with partners once borders re-open,” Ms Palaszczuk said.