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Tourism Managing Our New Zealand Paradise?

Media Release

29 August 2005

Tourism Managing Our New Zealand Paradise?

Understanding and managing the implications tourism has on the environment is the focus of the Tourism Industry Conference being held in Auckland, 19-21 September.

The Tourism Industry Association (TIA) who manage the annual conference, consider the interrelationship between the environment and tourism critical to both the industry’s success and ensuring that New Zealand remains the paradise people want to visit.

“This is a defining period in the tourism industry” says Fiona Luhrs, Chief Executive, TIA. “Working with the Department of Conservation we intend to meet our members’ needs, while ensuring that tourism has a positive and proactive influence on our New Zealand ‘paradise’.”

The registrations are very strong this year, which I think reflects the realisation of both large and small operators that environmental considerations impact directly or indirectly on tourism. However, the more attendees, the greater the input and understanding we can have of issues and impacts in this area, so we’d like to encourage other organisations to register as well.”

Jan Poole, from Kiwi Dundee Adventures, a Department of Conservation (DOC) concession holder based just north of Whangamata, decided to attend the conference because working towards a smooth and flexible operational relationship with DOC is critical to their business.

“It’s a big commitment to attend the conference, however I need to understand the direction DOC concessions are moving, and if I have any opportunity to be heard in relation to this I’ve got to take it” said Ms Poole. “We fully comply with DOC requirements, however due to the nature of organising individual and group requirements on different walks and activities, this can be a very involved process. We need to make the system work for us, so we felt compelled to attend this part of the conference.”

Jo Moore, Marketing Manager for Braemar (Hanmer Springs) and Te Kaikoura Lodges says she is attending for other reasons.

“It’s about ensuring I feel connected to the industry and that I am part of developing a universal approach to promoting New Zealand as a tourism destination. Otherwise you could easily feel isolated, and operate in quite a narrow sphere, especially when you’re in the South Island. So it’s definitely about networking for me!”

The Conference has a line up of expert national and international speakers, with the key guest speaker being Keith Bellows, Vice President of the National Geographic Society.

Please see www.nztourismconference.co.nz to find out more about the conference programme.

ENDS

Key statistics about tourism:

- Tourism is the world's fastest growing industry

- New Zealand tourism arrivals have doubled in size since 1994

- Forecast annual growth is about 5% on average for the next five years

- Tourism is New Zealand's single largest export sector which accounted for 18.5% of exports in the year to March 2004.

- Tourism generated $17.2 billion, with $7.4 billion from international visitors and $9.8 from domestic visitors, into the economy in the year ended March 2004.

- Tourism directly and indirectly employs 10 percent of the work force. That is one in 10 jobs in New Zealand.

- Tourism contributes 9.4% of gross domestic product. It generates nearly $500 million in GST returns from international visitors each year. Tourism is the only export sector whose international clients pay GST. Domestic visitor contribute another $800 million in GST to the economy.

The Tourism Industry Association represents more than 2000 businesses and organisations within the tourism industry.

Members include accommodation and transport providers, tourism attractions, visitor activities such as adventure and cultural tourism, inbound tour operators, regional tourism organisations, visitor information centres, researchers, publishers, consultants, training organisations and other tourism service providers.

Tourism is New Zealand’s largest single export sector – accounting for 17.8% of this country’s export earnings.

The Tourism Industry Association organises the Tourism Industry Conference, TRENZ and the Tourism Industry Awards.

Go to www.tianz.org.nz

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