Home to world-renowned beaches and hinterland beauty, the Gold Coast is strategically located on the east coast of Australia, less than an hour drive south from Brisbane.
With Australia’s 6th largest city and one of its most bio-diverse, the Gold Coast offers a competitive economic environment combined with a coastal lifestyle unrivalled in most capital cities. The region has a robust and diverse economy with strengths in tourism and events, international education and training, health services, manufacturing and the screen industry.
The international spotlight was on the Gold Coast in 2018, when the city hosted one of the largest multi-sport events in the world – the Commonwealth Games.
In preparation for the Games, the Gold Coast embraced transformative civic projects, with close to $13 billion in major projects that build upon its existing strengths and create new business and investment opportunities.
Economy and infrastructure
The Gold Coast has a robust economy valued at $25.5 billion, and an ambitious strategy that encourages sustainable growth.
The city has diversified from a platform of tourism and construction into knowledge-based industries including health, information communication technology (ICT), advanced manufacturing, education and professional services.
New infrastructure and investment in the ICT, health, education and advanced manufacturing sectors are redefining the economic profile and creating new opportunities.
Industry growth areas
Health and medical
The Gold Coast health and medical industry continues to grow and is now the number one employer.
The emerging Gold Coast Health and Knowledge precinct provides Australia’s newest and most comprehensive environment for clinical research innovation. Already home to the Gold Coast University Hospital, Griffith University, Gold Coast Private Hospital and the Games Village (under construction), the 200-hectare precinct is creating new opportunities for health, knowledge and commercial activities.
Information communication technology
The Gold Coast has a varied ICT industry partly driven by entrepreneurial individuals that created their own opportunity to prosper in an idyllic lifestyle location.
The city’s expanding digital infrastructure, progressive culture and networks help to create an environment where ICT businesses have flourished.
The lifestyle combined with relative affordability has seen many tech start-ups establish a presence within the city. The Gold Coast has more than 60 start-ups that have secured more than $69 million in digital funding.
The Gold Coast is home to numerous innovators, including 2017 Queensland Exporter of the Year Evolve Skateboards and Opmantek, winner of the Digital Technologies Award at the 2017 Australian Export Awards. Notable startups include Guvera and Nimble.
The Gold Coast has a robust tourism industry that capitalises on the natural beauty of its beaches and hinterland, quality accommodation options, wide variety of holiday experiences and reputation as a fun, family-friendly destination. Each year the city welcomes close to 12 million visitors from intrastate, interstate and international markets.
Australia’s 5th busiest international airport provides direct flights to key markets in Asia and New Zealand, with the largest sources markets being China, New Zealand and Japan. From 2011 to 2013, Chinese visitors grew by 24%, outstripping the growth of other capital cities.
In April 2018, the international spotlight was on the Gold Coast 2018 Commonwealth Games (GC2018) – one of the largest multi-sport events in the world. GC2018 attracted over 6,000 competitors and officials from 70 nations and territories, showcasing Queensland to 1.5 billion people.
The games’ success highlights the region’s capabilities and reputation for staging world-class major events.
Building on the city’s natural amenity and tourism infrastructure, the Gold Coast has established a reputation as a hub for high-performance sport – from permanent training facilities to international training camps, local sporting codes and major sport events.
The Gold Coast offers a combination of high-quality training and playing facilities, cutting-edge research and expertise in sport science, and an innovative sport industry.
Over two years the Gold Coast hosted more than 27 professional training camps, generating $2.4 million for the local economy.
International education and training
With 3 universities – Griffith, Bond and Southern Cross – private colleges, registered training organisations and leading private and public schools, the Gold Coast offers excellent education choices, particularly for international students.
The last decade has seen substantial growth in international student numbers with the region now hosting more than 25,000 international students from 100 countries every year.
With the rapid growth of the city’s universities, the Gold Coast is building a reputation for cutting edge research and innovation, including from drug discovery to tackle global health issues, solutions for climate change adaptation and an extensive program of research through Australia’s largest-ever sport science research grant.
International education and training interests in the region are serviced by the Study Gold Coast regional study cluster supported by TIQ.
The Gold Coast is a premier location for recreational boat building, maintenance and refits.
The city has 9 marinas with capabilities to service super yachts, as well as one of the most advanced marine industry cluster developments in the southern hemisphere.
Each year, international buyers come from around the world to attend the annual Sanctuary Cove Boat Show and Marine Export Conference that showcases local innovation.
The Gold Coast has a strong film and television industry. The close proximity of diverse locations, world class Village Roadshow Studios combined with the high calibre of experienced crew attracts production companies from across the world to produce feature films, commercials, television series and video clips.
The Gold Coast has attracted a combined production budget of US$1.7 billion from large-scale US productions including Pirates of the Caribbean, San Andreas, Unbroken and Railway Men.
Australia’s screen industry has a strong presence on the Gold Coast. The region boasts diverse shooting locations, high calibre film and production personnel and the Village Roadshow Studios which features a new world-class sound stage and the southern hemisphere’s largest water tank used for filming. These assets attract production companies from across the world to produce feature films, commercials, television series and video clips.
Recent large-scale movie productions include Pirates of the Caribbean, San Andreas, Unbroken and Railway Men representing a combined budget of US$1.7 billion.
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