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Visitor arrivals increase in August

Hon Paula Bennett

Associate Minister of Tourism

21 September 2016 Media Statement
Visitor arrivals increase in August

Figures released today by Statistics New Zealand shows tourist numbers are hitting new highs.

For the year ending August 2016 visitor arrivals hit a record 3.36 million, up 11 percent from the August 2015 year. The increase was mainly driven by increases in visitor arrivals from China and Australia.

It was also the most successful August on record, with 221,200 visitors last month, up 9 per cent from 2015 and mainly driven by a 13 per cent increase in holiday arrivals. Visitors from the United States, Australia, and Malaysia saw the biggest increases.

“The tourism sector is experiencing exceptional growth, with visitor arrivals forecast to grow 5.4 per cent a year, reaching 4.5 million visitors in 2022,” Mrs Bennett says.

“While the figures reflect work both the Government and the tourism sector are doing to spread visitor numbers throughout the year, we are also mindful of the need to help regional communities benefit from tourism growth.

“The Government’s $3 million annual Regional Mid-sized Tourism Facilities Grant Fund, to help communities with their smaller infrastructure needs, is now up and running, with applications received from across the country.

“This fund is an important step towards helping communities maximise their tourism growth potential by providing new or enhanced smaller infrastructure for visitors, such as rubbish bins, carparks, and restrooms. Decisions on successful projects will be announced in October.

“Changes to the Tourism Growth Partnership will also see half of the $8 million annual fund made available exclusively for projects in the regions. Applications for this fund close on 12 October.

“The Government has a tourism strategy in place that helps support the sector to harness the benefits of growth while managing the pressures this places on communities, infrastructure and businesses.”

View the latest figures from Statistics New Zealand here:

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