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Record international visitor spend in 2002

Record international visitor spend in 2002

Minister of Tourism Mark Burton is delighted by the results of the latest International Visitor Survey. The survey, released today by the Ministry of Tourism, shows that international visitors spent a record $6.14 billion for the year to December 2002—a 17.3 percent increase over the previous year.

"This is excellent news indeed. In the space of a single year, guests from around the world injected an additional $904 million into New Zealand’s economy.

"At a time of such concern over international events, it is particularly heartening that 2002 was such a positive year for New Zealand’s entire tourism sector.

"These results are all the more remarkable given that they encompass the year immediately following the September 11 terrorist attacks in the USA. That New Zealand has performed well in this difficult operating environment provides us with some reassurance.

" New Zealand’s recovery in no way suggests that there is any room for complacency or arrogance. As always, the sector must continue to focus on prudent business practice and attention to quality. When coupled with swift, well-coordinated management response to rapidly changing events, the industry will be best placed to minimise any short-term impacts from the current situation.

The 2002 data is also consistent with the longer-term performance of the industry, as measured by both the International Visitors Survey and other tourism sector indicators.

"Since 1997, international visitor expenditure has doubled from $3.03 billion to the current level at $6.14 billion. For an industry of this size, this is a tremendous ongoing performance and reflects the critical role and the major contribution tourism makes to the New Zealand economy," Mark Burton said.

"Not only are we attracting more visitors, but, more importantly, these visitors are staying longer and spending more.

“This data clearly demonstrates that tourism is heading in the right direction, and continues to be well positioned to contribute even more to the economic development of New Zealand."

The full report is available on http:// http://www.trcnz.govt.nz.

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