Call to encourage people to head outdoors to aid post-COVID recovery

Call to encourage people to head outdoors to aid post-COVID recovery

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A key shooting group says people should be encourage to head outdoors and pick up a new sport to aid recovery from pandemic lockdowns.

A key shooting group says people should be encourage to head outdoors and pick up a new sport to aid recovery from pandemic lockdowns.

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Shooting and hunting groups say they are ideally placed to help Australia recover from the COVID-19 pandemic.

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Shooting and hunting groups say they are ideally placed to help Australia recover from the COVID-19 pandemic.

They have called on state and federal governments to "embrace an industry with the potential to add billions of dollars to the national economy" to boost the recovery.

The industry was estimated in 2018 to add $2.4 billion and almost 20,000 jobs to the local economy.

"Despite this, governments of all persuasions act with indifference towards the shooting and hunting industry and often stifle our industry's growth and prosperity rather than develop it," Shooting Industry Foundation of Australia executive officer James Walsh said

Mr Walsh said Australia was the perfect place to pursue outdoor lifestyles.

"Given the economic boost that well-regulated hunting and shooting activities provides, it is time that all Australian governments became more welcoming of the shooting and hunting industry."

Mr Walsh said countries which embraced outdoor activities like hunting and fishing, enjoy long lasting conservation, social and economic benefits.

He said in the USA, 50 million Americans took part in hunting and fishing activities every year creating over $200 billion in economic activity and supporting more than 1.5 million jobs.

"In looking at post COVID economic recovery, Australian governments have the opportunity to get behind Australia's shooting and hunting industries to develop and grow a sovereign primary industry in Australia and experience the same economic benefits that many other countries enjoy," Mr Walsh said.

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