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Government committed to tourism’s longterm success

Government committed to tourism’s long-term success

The accommodation sector continues to reap the local benefits of New Zealand’s number one export earner, says Tourism Minister Mark Burton.

Guest nights increased by six per cent in July 2004 in comparison to July 2003—2.1 million guest nights in total. Total guest nights were up six per cent in the North Island, and four per cent in the South Island. Nine out of New Zealand’s twelve regions recorded more guest nights, including an impressive 20 per cent in Taranaki/Manawatu/Wanganui and 11 per cent for both Wellington and Canterbury.

“This is an excellent result, particularly coming off the back of last month’s successful Tourism Conference,” said Mark Burton. “New Zealand tourism is widely seen as an international success story, proving ourselves quick to mobilise and highly adaptable in the face of some very real challenges to the industry worldwide.

“But the sector’s success is no accident. In my almost five years as Tourism Minister, I have seen a strong partnership develop between the government, local government, and the wider tourism sector—a relationship that underpins tourism’s ongoing achievements. It’s a partnership we have all worked hard to build.

“This government remains committed to continuing our work with industry on quality and sustainability, both of which are key to ensuring the industry’s long-term future.

“At the Tourism Conference, I announced a new prestigious Tourism Scholarship fund to boost sector research, the second series of Business Class (the successful TV series for tourism businesses), funding to promote awareness and utilisation of the Ministry of Tourism/ Local Government New Zealand Tourism Planning Toolkit, and funding towards a major three-year $1.4 million research programme that will examine the areas that contribute to tourism yield.

“And our investments are paying off. We have achieved positive growth in both international visitor numbers and visitor expenditure. Moreover, our strong domestic figures also demonstrate the high value that New Zealanders place on seeing their country.

“Tourism is a premiere New Zealand industry. I look forward to continuing to work in partnership with the sector towards even greater successes in the future.”

The full survey is available on www.stats.govt.nz.

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