The State Government has signed a three-year deal to sponsor Western Australia's premier game fishing tournament, GAMEX, in Exmouth.
Premier and Tourism Minister Colin Barnett said GAMEX, which would celebrate its 39th anniversary in 2017, attracted more than 200 intrastate, interstate and international competitors ranging from novices to professionals.
"Exmouth is regarded as one of the world's best fishing destinations with more than 40 different game fish species on offer, including all six Australian billfish species," Mr Barnett said.
"Fishing is a popular tourism activity, with almost one million overnight visitors in WA participating in a fishing activity during their trip. Hosting events such as GAMEX helps to further promote the State as a fishing hotspot."
In addition to the fishing tournament, GAMEX will also feature family entertainment as well as education sessions, scientific studies and product information to teach people about sustainable game fishing.
GAMEX will be sponsored from 2017 until 2019 through Tourism WA's Regional Events Program, made possible by Royalties for Regions.
Regional Development Minister Terry Redman said tourism was a rapidly growing industry that had a strong influence on regional development.
"It's great to see Royalties for Regions investing in events which strengthen the regional economy and provide many social benefits for regional communities," Mr Redman said.
The Premier said events played an important role in tourism as they attracted visitors, provided media exposure for the destination and added vibrancy to the State.
"We have a strategy in place to increase the value of tourism from the current $9.6 billion to $12 billion by 2020, and hosting events such as GAMEX will help us achieve that goal," he said.
GAMEX will run from March 17-25, 2017
In 2015, Exmouth was ranked sixth in the Top 10 Billfisheries of the Year out of more than 11,000 entries from around the world for the number, variety and size of its billfish
Premier and Tourism Minister's office - 6552 5000
Regional Development Minister's office - 6552 6700