New Zealand predicts tourism spend to reach $11.1 billion by 2021

Published on : Monday, May 18, 2015

Tourism Industry Association New ZealandInternational visitor spending is projected to increase 48 per cent to $11.1 billion by 2021, according to tourism forecasts released today by the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment.


Visitor arrivals to New Zealand are also expected to increase. A predicted four per cent growth in visitor arrivals each year will see 3.8 million visitors arriving in New Zealand in 2021, up from 2.9 million in 2014.


Michael Bird, the Ministry’s General Manager Institutions and System Performance, says that most of this expected growth is expected to come from holidaymakers and those visiting friends and relatives.

“Australia is New Zealand’s largest visitor market, providing more than 1.2 million visitors in 2014. The forecasts show that this market will continue to be healthy and looks set to grow by three per cent a year to 2021.”

“Another key market for New Zealand is China, and we expect the annual growth rate for Chinese visitors to outstrip all other traditional markets.”


Mr Bird says that we can also expect to see a maturing of the Chinese visitor market in coming years, as visitors’ travel patterns change.

“We are already seeing a marked change in the travel patterns of Chinese visitors. They are visiting more regions in New Zealand, and taking on a wider range of activities. Chinese visitors are staying longer and spending more and we expect this trend to continue. Our tourism forecasts predict that China will be New Zealand’s largest market in terms of expenditure within the next 7 years.”


This year’s tourism forecasts include emerging markets India and Indonesia for the first time.
“These markets have seen strong growth in recent years, and we believe providing insight on their future potential will be useful to the tourism sector,” says Mr Bird.


“Increasingly, emerging economies such as India and Indonesia are boosting growth in value, not just volume.”

The Ministry has also developed an interactive web tool to accompany the forecasts, which will help users explore the key markets they are particularly interested in.

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