“A post-COVID tourism industry will play an important role in New Zealand’s economic recovery, but it will be different to the one that we are accustomed to. There will be new challenges, new opportunities and a new way of working,” Kelvin Davis said.
“I have tasked Tourism New Zealand with leading a piece of work alongside MBIE and the Department of Conservation, and with industry stakeholders, to reimagine the way we govern Tourism, how we market domestically and internationally, who we market to, and how we manage visitors when they arrive on our shores.
“We have an opportunity to rethink the entire way we approach tourism to ensure that it will make New Zealand a more sustainable place, enrich the lives of all our people and deliver a sector which is financially self-sustaining in the longer term.
“Given international travel is likely to be heavily restricted for some time, and features of our tourism industry such as cruise ships are currently banned, this will need to be a phased approach, looking at how we can focus on and promote domestic tourism in the short term and how we can target an international offering.
“I expect to receive advice on this work in the next couple of weeks,” Kelvin Davis said.
Tourism New Zealand Chief Executive Stephen England-Hall said this is an opportunity to listen to communities and design the future of tourism in New Zealand so that it benefits our people and our home.
“We’ll be working with key partners to ask questions, listen, and create something we can all be proud of, something that genuinely gives back more than it takes to Aotearoa and plays a key role in our economic success,” Stephen England-Hall said.
As part of planning for a restart, Kelvin Davis said that he and Conservation Minister Eugenie Sage have agreed to review the International Visitor Conservation and Tourism Levy (IVL) investment plan.
“This plan was prepared at a different time, for a different future. We are now looking at what aspects of the plan remain fit for purpose, and how the IVL can be best used to help rebuild the tourism industry as part of a restart package,” Kelvin Davis said.
“This has been an immensely challenging situation for our tourism industry.
“I want to thank everyone in the sector who has offered their advice, expertise and insights at this time. I will be calling on you again when we move into the restart phase,” Kelvin Davis said.