Leader of the opposition Anthony Albanese and member for Maribyrnong, Victoria, Bill Shorten have both called for an extension to the JobKeeper scheme beyond March 2021 in order to save the tourism and events industries.

Speaking at a press conference on Monday in Cairns, Mr Albanese said that Labor is on the side of the tourism industry, and called on the federal government to take the same stance.

“The cost of re-establishing a business, re-establishing that relationship is far higher in the long term than it is of keeping this assistance going, keeping workers connected to their employer,” he said.

Speaking in parliament on Monday, Mr Shorten called on prime minister Scott Morrison to extend the JobKeeper program past March 2021 in order to save the events industry.

“Many people have been affected negatively, but none harder than the live events industry. They need government assistance and they need it now,” he said.

“Everyone in Australia wants to return to normal, however, we can’t do that until the job is finished, and in live events the government has not finished the job.
“JobKeeper must stay.”

During his speech, Mr Shorten cited findings from a survey conducted by the Save Victorian Events Group.

Among other things, the survey found that from April to December 2020, the income of event businesses in Victoria was down 85 per cent.

You can read the survey findings in full here.