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$30m vote of confidence in tourism industry

$30m vote of confidence in tourism industry

The Tourism Industry Association New Zealand (TIA) says the $30 million injection of new funding for tourism marketing is a real vote of confidence in the future of New Zealand tourism.

Prime Minister and Tourism Minister John Key made the pre-Budget announcement this morning.

TIA Chief Executive Tim Cossar says the new funding – $25m to be used for international destination marketing and $5m for joint venture initiatives – will help attract future customers from both new and existing markets.

“At this stage, the additional $30m is for one year. So the industry will have to prove that we can use it to keep building the contribution tourism makes to New Zealand. I’m confident we can do this – the industry has already shown this with the excellent work it put into developing public-private joint ventures from the $5m government funding allocated in January,” Mr Cossar says.

“TIA has persistently advocated for increased Government investment in international marketing and we’re delighted to see the Prime Minister continuing the commitment he showed to the industry when he decided to take the tourism portfolio.”

The industry will make every effort to rejuvenate New Zealand’s offer to the international visitor, especially with Rugby World Cup 2011 taking place next year, Mr Cossar says.

“As we come out of recession, this is no time to be complacent. We want to work closely with the Government to achieve the results we all want to see. Tourism is a bedrock industry for New Zealand and is central to building economic growth.”

Tourism Holdings Ltd (THL) Chief Executive Grant Webster says Mr Key’s announcement shows outstanding support from a Minister who understands the benefits tourism can add to the economy.

“We’ll be looking to maximise every dollar the Government is spending, to benefit the New Zealand public,” Mr Webster says.

New Zealand Hotel Council (NZHC) independent chair Jennie Langley says the hotel sector welcomes the new funding.

“With his announcement, the Prime Minister has issued a challenge to the industry to work even more closely together and support the Government’s marketing initiatives to ensure this additional funding demonstrates a proven return to all of New Zealand,” Ms Langley says.

Totally Tourism managing director Mark Quickfall says the funding will strengthen existing marketing efforts and allow the industry to better pursue new markets.

“The current level of funding limits the industry to putting most of its focus on traditional, proven markets. But this will mean we can do more work to promote New Zealand to new and emerging markets, and find innovative ways to get our message out there.”

Mr Quickfall, who also chairs Destination Queenstown, said the joint venture funding was particularly good news. The public-private partnerships allowed the industry to increase the impact of its marketing spend.

ENDS

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