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Visitor industry report goes under the spotlight

Queenstown Lakes District’s visitor industry report goes under the spotlight

A locally-produced, district-wide report on tourism will be discussed with senior industry executives following the Shaping Our Future AGM this Thursday.

The final report on the Queenstown Lakes District’s visitor industry – driven by the community think-tank Shaping Our Future (SOF) and produced by a task force of local volunteers – will be presented at SOF’s AGM at the Memorial Centre on Thursday, February 19, at 5.30pm and interested residents are being encouraged to attend.

The report will be then put in front of national organisations like the Tourism Industry Association of New Zealand (TIANZ) and central Government bodies such as the Ministry for Business, Innovation and Employment.

“This is the next practical step for the visitor industry report – national tourism organisations and stakeholder groups need to know about what’s happening in the most important district for tourism in New Zealand,” SOF Chairman David Kennedy says.

The report, produced by the Queenstown and Wanaka-based Visitor Industry Task Force, raises seven recommendations that address “elephants in the room” when it comes to ensuring the successful future of the local tourism industry, task force chairman Mark Edghill says.

Recommendations include:
· In consultation with Queenstown Lakes District Council, Chambers of Commerce, regional tourism organisations and agencies, establish a “Framework for the Future” to guide destination management in the district

· Working with QLDC to lead an informed debate on options for the future funding of infrastructure

· Local tourism operators working with Lake Wānaka Tourism and Destination Queenstown to beef up the research and understanding of the visitor market and its impacts on the community

· Shaping Our Future holds forums and establishes an Infrastructure Taskforce to find ways to improve efficiency, affordability and sustainability of buildings, transport, three waters (potable, waste and storm water) and communications infrastructure.

“The Visitor Industry Task Force has been working on these recommendations since the initial public forums in April 2014. It’s rewarding to see what a group of engaged volunteers can achieve. We’ve welcomed the feedback from the community and now we’re excited about putting our final recommendations into action,” says Edghill, who works as Queenstown Airport’s Chief Financial Officer.

Locals interested in the environment, tourism and the district’s economy are invited to attend the Shaping Our Future AGM.

Kennedy adds: “Shaping Our Future Incorporated is achieving some great results with the help of many community volunteers. It’s great to see what we can achieve when we combine our expertise. We encourage anyone who’s keen to be involved in the process to come along to our AGM this Thursday.”


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