Tourism Minister, Peeni Henare, today announced the establishment of a national destination management team to ensure New Zealand’s regions are prepared to maximise tourism opportunities as visitor numbers grow.
The Minister said $5 million from the International Visitor Conservation and Tourism Levy will fund the new team, which will work with regions across the country over the next two years as they implement their own destination management plans – taking into account each region’s unique attractions, while ensuring they collaborate at a national level.
“We want people visiting our regions, having a great experience and spending money, which helps local economies and creates jobs. But we also want to look after our natural environment and minimise the impact visitors have,” said Mr Henare.
“Through destination planning, regions aim to develop a well-managed, sustainable visitor destination that can adapt and change, depending on the region’s needs or opportunities from a social, economic, cultural and environmental point of view.”
He said regions were already in the process of developing plans across Aotearoa, thanks to $11.5 million in funding from the Government’s COVID-19 $47 million relief package for Regional Tourism Organisations.
“The additional funding from the international visitor levy will put a team in place that is responsible for progressing destination management activity nationally, working closely with tourism organisations and business, government, and communities across Aotearoa to improve the visitor experience.”
“The team will bring a national perspective to regional tourism issues, identifying and progressing actions that will bring the greatest collective benefit, and helping to coordinate regional activity on national tourism priorities such as the Industry Transformation Plans.
“We will continue to support the sector on the journey towards a more sustainable and resilient tourism industry, while ensuring we can share our world-class regional destinations with the world,” the Minister said.
Details of the team’s work programme, and organisation that will host it, are expected to be confirmed in the coming month.