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Tourism Election Manifesto

TIA's 2017 Tourism Election Manifesto Tourism for Tomorrow highlights the industry's nine priorities for a sustainable future, and what we want from the incoming Government:

A sustainable industry, for NZ's tomorrow - support the tourism industry's commitment to sustainability

A sustainable industry, for NZ's tomorrow - protect New Zealand's natural environment

Invest in infrastructure for NZ's tomorrow - prioritise investment in tourism infrastructure

Invest in infrastructure, for NZ's tomorrow - enhance and protect the public conservation estate

Support tourism, for NZ's tomorrow - Government policies to support tourism

Support tourism, for NZ's tomorrow - political recognition of tourism's importance

Support tourism, for NZ's tomorrow - Government investment for greater tourism success

Support tourism, for NZ's tomorrow - ensure outstanding visitor experiences

Support tourism, for NZ's tomorrow - providing jobs for New Zealanders

 

Download the Tourism Expenditure document to see what tourism is worth to your electorate.

Read our tips on lobbying your local candidates. 


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A sustainable industry, for New Zealand's tomorrow - support the tourism industry's commitment to sustainability

For the tourism industry to be sustainable– environmentally, socially and economically– we must protect and enhance the environment on which tourism businesses depend, maintain support from local communities, and address regional dispersal and seasonality issues.

TIA supports the goal that sustainability will become a genuine ethical underpinning of the tourism industry. Our desire and expectation is that, long term, sustainability will become a core value against which all decisions are tested.

Financially sustainable businesses are able to invest in environmental and social sustainability, maintaining and enhancing New Zealand for future generations of residents and visitors.

TIA calls on the Incoming Government to:
  • Support the tourism sustainability goal through positive policy and regulatory settings, and funding
  • Continue support for the post-earthquake recovery of both Kaikoura and Christchurch as key regions for the industry’s economic sustainability.

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A sustainable industry, for New Zealand's tomorrow - protect New Zealand's natural environment

New Zealand’s natural environment is our tourism product. It is the main reason why international visitors come here, it is important to domestic travel and it supports thousands of tourism businesses.

Good environmental performance goes hand in hand with a quality visitor experience.

The tourism industry is developing strategies to demonstrate its commitment to environmental sustainability and to champion the interests of our environment.

TIA calls on the Incoming Government to:
  • Demonstrate a serious commitment to protecting the environment, recognising its importance to tourism
  • Commit to enhancing our fresh water resources and make measurable progress on Predator Free New Zealand.
     

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Invest in infrastructure, for New Zealand's tomorrow - prioritise investment in tourism infrastructure

The current tourism boom is placing pressure on the capacity of the tourism industry at peak times and in some places. This could harm industry growth, as well as impacting on community support for tourism.

TIA’s National Tourism Infrastructure Assessment found that much of the infrastructure identified as a priority for investment is local and mixed use (used by both residents and visitors), such as car parking, toilets, and water and sewerage systems. To optimise the benefits of tourism for host communities, coordination between central and local government agencies and industry partners is needed for these projects to proceed.

Other infrastructure requirements include improved telecommunications at popular visitor destinations around the country, better roads and road signage, and cruise ship facilities to enable growth of the sector and provide the ability for all cruise ships to berth.

TIA calls on the Incoming Government to:
  • Work with the tourism industry to establish a sustainable funding model to address medium and longer term local and mixed use infrastructure priorities
  • Make a commitment to removing barriers to infrastructure investment.


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Invest in infrastructure, for New Zealand's tomorrow - enhance and protect the public conservation estate

As the manager of a third of New Zealand’s total land area, the Department of Conservation is a highly valued participant in the tourism industry. Hundreds of tourism operators rely on access to public conservation land in order to operate their businesses. DOC also provides tourism experiences like the Great Walks and infrastructure used by visitors such as huts and tracks.

The tourism boom is putting pressure on some of our most celebrated outdoor attractions. A new mix of funding options and mechanisms is needed to capitalise on the tourism opportunities while protecting landscapes and species.

There are opportunities in regional New Zealand to improve or create new attractions and activities on public conservation land and tourism operators are willing to invest in the required infrastructure.

TIA calls on the Incoming Government to:
  • Provide for a sustainable funding model to ensure DOC remains a significant contributor and enabler of the visitor experience without compromising its core role of growing conservation
  • Recognise that tourism concessionaires provide income to DOC as well as enhancing visitors’ enjoyment of the public conservation estate. Reduce barriers to private sector investment in new attractions and activities on the public conservation estate, and promote opportunities for concessionaires. Concession costs and cost review systems need to be transparent and predictable.

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Support tourism, for New Zealand's tomorrow - Government policies to support tourism

In recognition of the importance of one of New Zealand’s biggest industries, we need an accessible and responsive public sector that is willing to listen and work cooperatively on solutions. It is important to ensure tourism functions across government are adequately resourced to support the development of the valuable tourism industry.


Ensuring the tourism industry’s interests are considered in the development of government policy will be important in building on recent growth and delivering further value to New Zealand’s economy.

TIA calls on the Incoming Government to:
  • Create policy and regulatory settings that are supportive of sustainable tourism growth and give tourism greater visibility as a leading and innovative sector
  • Recognise the continually evolving nature of tourism and provide policy settings that create a level playing field for all industry participants
  • Continue to support the Public Service CEOs’ Tourism Group
  • Examine the regulatory environment applied to businesses serving visitors and assess where the compliance burden can be reduced to support increased productivity. Any regulatory change should lead to improved business outcomes and better government services.


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Support tourism, for New Zealand's tomorrow - political recognition of tourism's importance

Tourism 2025 has aligned the tourism industry behind a single goal: to grow total tourism revenue to $41 billion by 2025 and to do so by growing value ahead of volume. We are well on track to achieving that goal and attention is now turning to setting a new long-term vision that will maximise the benefits of the industry’s growth for all New Zealand.

Tourism has contributed almost half of the total export growth New Zealand has experienced since 2012. Tourism is also an important factor in driving regional growth. It is the only industry that creates businesses and provides jobs in every part of the country, often in areas where few other opportunities exist.

TIA calls on the Incoming Government to:
  • Ensure the Tourism portfolio continues to be held by a senior front bench Minister, to reflect the industry’s importance to growing New Zealand’s economy
  • Recognise tourism’s importance to the overall trade and export growth agenda
  • Support and work with the industry as it keeps updating its Growth Framework in order to address the most pressing industry issues
  • Encourage and incentivise tourism through regional development plans, and support destination management and development.


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Support tourism, for New Zealand's tomorrow - Government investment for greater tourism success

Our international visitors contribute to New Zealand’s economy in a variety of ways, including direct payments to the many businesses they use, the Border Clearance Levy and the GST they pay. As a result of the growth in tourism, GST receipts from international visitors have grown from $800m in 2014 to $1.15b in 2016. This bonus tax dividend should be invested back into the industry, to capitalise on the opportunities available for growth.

As well as investing in infrastructure, more resourcing is needed for tourism policy, research and insight.

TIA calls on the Incoming Government to:
  • Invest more of the tourism dividend received by the Government into infrastructure to support the industry’s future growth
  • Maintain support for Tourism New Zealand’s marketing efforts and use TNZ to encourage regional dispersal and seasonality, and support new product development
  • Give more resourcing to tourism policy functions within government
  • Align government tourism data and insight with the industry’s Tourism 2025 aspirations, insight strategy and plans
  • Recognise tourism within government research and innovation initiatives such as the Science and Innovation programme.


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Support tourism, for New Zealand's tomorrow - ensure outstanding visitor experiences

New Zealand’s international visitors interact with multiple government agencies throughout their journey. These interactions shape their experience of New Zealand and contribute to our international reputation as an outstanding visitor destination.

The Government has many key roles to play in delivering an outstanding visitor experience.

TIA calls on the Incoming Government to:
  • Continue enabling international air services, especially those which encourage growth from high quality segments and emerging markets
  • Continue liberalising visitor visa processes to support growth from key visitor markets. Advance consideration of initiatives to establish common border facilitation with Australia
  • Support Customs, the Ministry for Primary Industries and Immigration NZ to work in genuine partnership with the tourism industry on continuous improvement to the border experience
  • Continue support for visitor safety initiatives, including the visiting driver project, and adventure and outdoor tourism safety
  • Commit to enabling a roading network that delivers a safe and enjoyable driving experience and promotes regional dispersal
  • Continue support for the industry’s freedom camping actions.


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Support tourism, for New Zealand's tomorrow - providing jobs for New Zealanders

Government support for tourism creates employment opportunities for New Zealanders in every region, often where few other opportunities exist. Attracting more Kiwis to work in tourism will bring economic benefits.

We also need recognition that workers from overseas will always be part of the mix, filling jobs when suitable New Zealanders can’t be found.

TIA calls on the Incoming Government to:
  • Commit to working in partnership with us to attract New Zealanders to work in tourism
  • Ensure immigration settings allow tourism employers to secure quality staff when no suitable New Zealanders are available.

 

Download the Manifesto text

 

Photo credits:

Peter May, Glass Bottom Boat, Coromandel
Rotorua Canopy Tours
Novotel Hotel Auckland
Malcolm O'Neill, Hiking NZ, Tongariro
Rimutaka Cycle Trail South, WREDA
Waitangi Treaty Grounds, Northland
Peppers Carrington Resort
Queenstown Airport
The Langham, Auckland