Page 3660 - Week 10 - Wednesday, 13 September 2017

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spirit and engendering a sense of ownership and pride in Canberra and its event offerings.

I am pleased to say that community surveys over the past four years have consistently highlighted support for ACT government involvement in events, with the most recent data showing 87 per cent of Canberrans supporting ACT government involvement in attracting and securing events, and 92 per cent of Canberrans believing it is important for our city to host major events.

Community support and participation are a critical factor in determining an event’s success. In the simplest possible terms, whether or not an event is embraced by the community is key to its success; therefore a good cultural and strategic fit within its community is absolutely imperative. Canberra has many talented artists and highly regarded arts organisations that provide inspiration and opportunity for residents within Canberra and beyond. The organisation and delivery of large events are seen as a real strength of the city. However, these can also be enhanced by a range of smaller local events and festivals, as Minister Stephen-Smith outlined in her contribution.

A framework focusing on local events can provide a supportive environment for those events to flourish and also allow opportunities for new events to be introduced into our annual calendar. The framework seeks to build more events designed specifically for families, more music events specifically for over 18s, and a winter festival for the city.

In addition, the major events strategy will be leveraged to develop an overarching whole-of-government framework to realise the full potential of our events sector, covering events managed and delivered by the ACT government, along with those events that are owned or operated by local groups, commercial event organisers and associations.

In maximising the benefits for the Canberra region and strengthening our position as an event-friendly city, there is a clear focus on developing a whole-of-government approach to event facilitation and support for Canberra to become a world-class events destination.

I am pleased that we have had the opportunity to discuss these issues today in the Assembly. I particularly thank Mr Pettersson for his passion for new event ideas. I am very cognisant of the need to renew and refresh the New Year’s Eve event, as the format for that event has been relatively static, it would be fair to say, for a number of decades. Whilst there are elements of it that definitely need to be kept and enhanced, I believe there is an opportunity for Canberra to be a little bolder in our celebration of the new year.

I also note, and will be very interested in, community feedback in relation to the significant changes that have occurred for Floriade for the 30th anniversary, noting the introduction of the Floriade Fringe event that will take place in Haig Park in October. That, together with NightFest, are two examples of innovation in the context of a core and popular event; two examples of innovation that broaden the appeal and the demographic appeal of the Floriade event. It is Australia’s premier celebration of

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