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Tourism spending forecast to grow 25% by 2020

Media release

5 September 2014

Tourism Outlook positive – spending forecast to grow 25 percent by 2020

Spending by international visitors is expected to grow by 25 per cent to $8.3 billion by 2020, according to the New Zealand Tourism Sector Outlook 2014-2020 released today by the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment (MBIE).

MBIE’s General Manager Institutions and System Performance Michael Bird says that growth is expected from both traditional and emerging markets but the mix of visitors coming to New Zealand is changing.

“The outlook to 2020 is promising and it will be up to the industry operators to rise to the challenges and take advantage of the opportunities to grow their sector. We hope these forecasts will support strategic thinking and forward planning by the sector to maximise the potential of the changing tourism industry,” Mr Bird says.

The forecasts show that visitor numbers will grow by about 850,000 (31 per cent) to 3.6 million between now and 2020. Eighty percent of the extra visitors will come from Australia (385,000) and China (280,000). Growth in arrivals from Australia hit 5.4 per cent in 2013, returning to pre global financial crisis levels. Australia will continue to be a key market for the tourism sector in the long term. Moderate growth in visitors from Europe and North America is expected to continue over the next six years.

Mr Bird says China presents a huge opportunity for the tourism industry. “Getting China right will shape the outcomes for the whole sector.”

“The number of Chinese visitors to New Zealand grew 16.2 per cent in 2013, but a new Chinese law aimed at preventing tour companies selling below cost tour packages, introduced in October 2013, may slow arrivals slightly”.

The report is available here


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