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January 15, 2015

Australia: AFC Asian Cup Kicks Goal for Australia

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Australia’s hosting of the AFC Asian Cup, which runs until January 31, provides a fantastic opportunity to reinforce the country’s international reputation for hosting major events and also as a highly desirable destination, according to Tourism Australia managing director John O’Sullivan.

“The teams have arrived in Australia along with tens of thousands of international football fans who are all here to lend their support,” he said. “This 23 day ‘festival of football’ provides the perfect platform for Australia to showcase our credentials as a great place to visit amongst some of our most important overseas markets.

“With more than 500,000 spectators - including around 30,000 fans from overseas - expected to attend the 32 matches being played across Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, Canberra and Newcastle, this is a tourism free kick. Thousands of international football fans will have ample opportunity to explore our five host cities and their surrounding tourism regions.”

Michael Brown, chief executive of the AFC Asian Cup Australia 2015 Local Organising Committee, said that aside from promoting soccer and sport in general the aims for the tournament were to open doors for business, tourism, trade and investment, and to create new community connections.

“Seven of our top 10 trading partners are in the AFC region,” he said. “The fact that Federal and State Governments have invested heavily in the Asian Cup shows that they understand and are committed to using the opportunities football presents.”

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