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Tourism Australia pauses its ‘Matesong’ campaign for Australia amid bushfire catastrophe

As the nation continues to be ravaged by bushfires, Tourism Australia has opted to stop running its ‘Matesong’ campaign that promoted the country as a prime tourist destination to British travellers.

The campaign, which cost $15 million to make, featured Kylie Minogue highlighting blue skies, cuddly koalas and awe-inspiring landscapes but promoters felt these images contrasted too greatly with scenes of rural regions currently ablaze and in smoke.

Hundreds of bushfires across the country have destroyed wildlife, homes and the livelihoods of many communities, making headlines worldwide.

Tourism Australia said the main priority at this stage is an emergency response to the fires, and the safety of communities and tourists, not the promotion of a nation as tourist getaway.

“Tourism Australia will have an important role to play in highlighting that Australia will continue to be a world-leading and safe tourism destination, whether in unaffected regions or those that will recover from these bushfires in the months and years to come.”

“In light of the current situation in Australia, we have reduced some of our campaign activity in the UK,” said a spokesperson to media site Mumbrella. “We will continue to review our planned activity over the coming weeks and months.”

“As the Australian Government agency responsible for attracting tourists to our country, Tourism Australia will have an important role to play in highlighting that Australia will continue to be a world-leading and safe tourism destination, whether in unaffected regions or those that will recover from these bushfires in the months and years to come.”

Antonino Tati

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