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 sixth 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 $37.24 billion,1 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 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, 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.2

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.

Tourism

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. In the year ending March 2020, the city welcomed just over 3.9 million visitors from intrastate, interstate and international markets.3

Australia’s 6th 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.4

Sport

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.

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.

he region has seen substantial growth in international student numbers, with the region now hosting 32,000 international students from over 130 countries.5

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.

Marine

The Gold Coast is a premier location for recreational boat building, maintenance and refits.

The city has 5 marinas offering dedicated service and facilities for super yachts, as well as one of the most advanced marine industry cluster developments in the southern hemisphere.6

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.

Film and screen industry

Australia’s film and 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.

Trade and investment services

For more information on opportunities in the Gold Coast region, connect with TIQ today.

References

1Gold Coast City, 2019, ‘Gold Coast City Economic Profile’, https://economy.id.com.au/gold-coast, accessed July 2020.

2Regional Development Australia Gold Coast Inc, ‘Investment and Trade Opportunities’, https://rdagoldcoast.org.au/invest/investment-trade-opportunities, accessed July 2020.

3Australian Government Tourism Research Australia, Mar 2020, ‘Latest National Visitor Survey (NVS) Results’, https://www.tra.gov.au/Domestic/domestic-tourism-results, accessed July 2020.

4Queensland Airports Limited, 2019, ‘Gold Coast Airport’, https://www.qldairports.com.au/about/gold-coast-airport, accessed July 2020.

5Study Gold Coast, ‘Why Study on the Gold Coast’, https://www.studygoldcoast.org.au/why-study-on-the-gold-coast/, accessed July 2020.

6Department of State Development, Manufacturing, Infrastructure and Planning, ‘Queensland Superyacht Strategy 2018-23 (pg 12)’, https://www.statedevelopment.qld.gov.au/resources/defence-industries/queensland-superyacht-strategy-2018-23.pdf, accessed July 2020.