New Zealand expects a record number of international visitors by 2024

 Wednesday, May 9, 2018 


indexBy 2024, it is expected that the number of international visitors coming in to New Zealand each year will be at par with the country’s population.

Hence, the new buzzword for the country’s tourism industry is ”sustainability” rather than growth.

At the Trenz event in Dunedin yesterday, both Tourism Industry Aotearoa (TIA) chief executive Chris Roberts and Eileen Basher of the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment spoke about the latest tourism figures.

Ms. Basher presented tourism forecasts for the next six years which showed visitor arrivals could reach 5.1 million by 2024, overlapping with the projected population increase. By then, the international tourism spending is also expected to reach $14.8 billion, going up by almost 40%.

China, which has an increasing number of families and older visitors travelling, is expected to become New Zealand’s largest tourism market with regard to spending by 2024.

Mr. Roberts said that tourism is the NZ’s largest export earner, bringing in 21% of the total. Around 400,000 people are employed directly or indirectly in the tourism industry.

Increase in tourism is a global phenomenon, which is driven by the growth of middle classes around the world.

However, Mr. Roberts said that while the growth is good, it came with a hefty price from airport congestion to traffic and environmental concerns.

Hence, sustainability needs to be part of the industry, growing value rather than volume.

Mr. Roberts said that it is important to look after the environment, as that is what the country’s tourism product is built on.

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