3AW Melbourne

  • Transcript, E&OE
Subjects: Royal invite.
30 November 2017

TOM MITCHELL: Our next guest reckons that we should encourage them. In fact pay for them to have their honeymoon here to encourage other people, other foreign tourists to do the same. The Federal Minister for tourism is our next guest Steve Ciobo, good evening.

STEVEN CIOBO: Good evening Tom, good to be with you.

TOM MITCHELL: So have you actually issued a formal invitation for Prince Harry to have both his buck's week and honeymoon here?

STEVEN CIOBO: I've done up a letter to Clarence House inviting, for consideration of Australia for pre-wedding celebrations as well as for their actual honeymoon. Because there are so many aspects to this country that are just amazing and I think that would work well.

TOM MITCHELL: Okay now, are you proposing that the Australian taxpayer pay for this as a type of investment in tourism?

STEVEN CIOBO: No, no, definitely not. No I think they will have the wherewithal to be able to fund such a travel themselves. But what it does do is really put Australia on the map. Let's not forget Tom, that literally the eyes of the world will be on this wedding and the upcoming celebrations as part of the wedding. If we can have Australia feature as part of this, whether it's the honeymoon or pre-wedding celebrations, that is going to be seen and witnessed on the fact that they chose Australia, by billions of people around the world. It's great for Australia and of course, it will be a great holiday for them.

TOM MITCHELL: I agree. Now, have you given Prince Harry perhaps a list of ideas, places to visits, things to do for his 'Buck's Week'?

STEVEN CIOBO: I have. You know, there's so many great opportunities in Australia. We've come up with a couple of novel ideas. There's an opportunity in the Northern Territory where you can actually do a pub crawl. But it's a pub crawl with a difference. You actually take a chopper and you go between four or five of the most iconic Aussie pubs that the Northern Territory has to offer. Of course, there's Barra fishing up there as well. And there's a whole host of different activities on the Gold Coast, part of Queensland, and southern states as well. Not to mention some of the most romantic and beautiful locations that a honeymoon couple could ever want to go to.

TOM MITCHELL: Right, now just going back to the chopper pub crawl which sounds a great idea. But I assume the people doing the drinking aren't the ones flying the helicopter?

STEVEN CIOBO: I think if you want to be able to finish the trip we'd hope so.

TOM MITCHELL: Do we know, has Meghan Markle ever been here?

STEVEN CIOBO: That I don't know to be honest with you. I haven't done the research in to whether she's been to Australia before, but obviously Harry has. He had a great time last time he was here. His father Prince Charles of course, has come to Australia a number of times and enjoyed himself too.

TOM MITCHELL: Is there any pattern with the royals, when they get married do they sort of spread it around different Commonwealth countries?

STEVEN CIOBO: No, it's ultimately their choice about what they decide to do. Given Prince Harry's great affection for Australia, and frankly given the affection many Aussies have for Prince Harry, I think it would be a match made in heaven.

TOM MITCHELL: Are you expecting a response from Clarence House on this?

STEVEN CIOBO: I'm sure as a matter courtesy and protocol that we'll get a response from them. My most important thing is to just make sure that it's in their mind, a possible consideration for them to come.

TOM MITCHELL: And also make sure they don't schedule either the Buck's Week or the honeymoon with say, 'Schoolies Week' on the Gold Coast, for example?

STEVEN CIOBO: Well we've got the Commonwealth Games on the Gold Coast next year, as well of course they'll be hosting the Invictus Games with which Prince Harry is really involved. So we've got great excuses for them to come.

TOM MITCHELL: I think it's a great idea, I think we should even kick in a few bucks just in case Prince Harry is short of a few. Federal Minister for Tourism Steve Ciobo, thanks for joining us.

STEVEN CIOBO: Good to speak to you, you have a great afternoon.

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