New Zealand Māori Tourism welcomes the Government’s $400 million Tourism Recovery Fund to help the sector recuperate from the impact of the coronavirus pandemic, as businesses reopen their doors at Alert Level 2 today.
The package includes a $10 million contingency fund for NZ Māori Tourism to repurpose and reposition the Māori tourism sector.
Chief Executive Pania Tyson-Nathan says she is delighted with the announcement, as it acknowledges the significant contribution that Māori make to tourism in Aotearoa.
“Tourism operators will be relieved at the extended wage subsidy, a new contingency fund and a strategic assets programme announced in Budget 2020, which recognises the long road ahead for many thousands of businesses and people who work in the sector,” Ms Tyson-Nathan says.
“As New Zealand’s largest export sector, we’ve been particularly hard hit by the closure of international borders and domestic lockdown measures to control the spread of Covid-19.
“We’re pleased the Government has recognised this and acted to alleviate some of the worst impacts on tourism businesses and their staff, just as the doors start to reopen.”
“Today marks the beginning of the recovery as businesses like Rotorua’s Waiotapu Thermal Wonderland reopen their doors for local visitors.”
Ms Tyson-Nathan also welcomed the establishment of the Tourism Recovery Ministers Group and Tourism Futures Taskforce to guide the sector’s recovery and the pivot to domestic tourism which contributes 60% of the sector’s revenue.
She urged the Taskforce and Ministers to address the burden of cumulative compliance costs on businesses already under pressure.
“Even a short-term reprieve on these costs would go a long way to help operators to keep their doors open in the tough times ahead, while also enabling them to improve productivity.”
Māori tourism employs about 14,000 people across the country and includes some of the country’s most iconic and globally renowned Tourism attractions.