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New data shows tourism sector is booming

Rt Hon John Key

Prime Minister
Minister of Tourism

26 October 2016 Media Statement

New data shows tourism sector is booming

Figures released today show tourism contributed $14.5 billion to the New Zealand economy in the year to March 2016, says Prime Minister and Minister of Tourism John Key.

“Exceptional growth in the sector has generated around 6,600 new tourism jobs in the year to March 2016, and the industry now accounts for 20.7 per cent of export earnings,” says Mr Key.

“The more than 188,000 people employed in tourism now make up 7.5 per cent of the total workforce. Communities around New Zealand are reaping the benefits of this strong growth – both through the jobs created and tourists spending locally on services and activities.”

Mr Key says the figures which were released in today’s Tourism Satellite Account reflect the work the sector and government are doing to boost the value tourism brings to New Zealand.

“The Government is also supporting the tourism sector to manage the pressures this growth can place on some communities, infrastructure and businesses,” Mr Key says.

“A focus of the Government’s tourism strategy is to attract high-value visitors, not only to tourism hotspots during peak seasons, but to a range of regions, and throughout the year. For instance, through its promotional work Tourism New Zealand is encouraging travellers to explore more regions, especially in the spring and autumn months.”

Mr Key says the Tourism Growth Partnership now has a regional funding stream to support regional tourism projects, and the Regional Mid-Sized Tourism Facilities Grant Fund helps address infrastructure pressures.

“Work on helping the sector address its ongoing labour needs has now also been established formally under the cross-agency Sector Workforce Engagement Programme.

“Domestic tourism expenditure has also grown by 7.4 per cent to $20.2 billion in the year to March. Over this period, tourism businesses contributed $12.9 billion or 5.6 per cent of GDP. Industries supporting tourism generated an additional $9.8 billion on top of this.”

The full report is available on the Statistics New Zealand website:

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