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The convention economy

Written By: - Date published: 9:36 am, July 29th, 2013 - 14 comments
Categories: tourism - Tags:

You know it by now, Key, English, and Joyce have said it often enough – National’s formula for the economy is more mining, selling assets, and convention centres. We’re actually making less money from mining now than 5 years ago. Asset sales have been a predictable failure. But we’ve got 3 new convention centres coming – SkyCity, Christchurch, Queenstown – that’ll bring in the international revenue and turn around the collapse in international tourism revenue that Tourism Minister Key has presided over, eh? Nah.

See, the international convention market is shrinking.

There’s a body that collects stats on international conventions – it’s an imperfect art, there’s an artificial upward bias in the numbers because they find out about new convention centres all the time. And despite that upward bias, the numbers are flat or falling:

2002 6,155
2003 6,405
2004 7,642
2005 8,121
2006 8,745
2007 9,536
2008 10,149
2009 10,346
2010 10,406
2011 10,070

And our grand plan is to build 3 more bloody convention centres to this stalled market that already has surplus capacity. Oh, and we’re going to build them in New Zealand – because convention organisers are just so excited to add an extra grand to each of their attendees’ flight costs.

Maybe, just maybe National’s gimmicks aren’t the key to a healthy economy. Maybe the key to a healthy economy is a lower dollar, affordable, quality housing rather than a housing bubble funded by overseas debt, fairly priced electricity, and sustainable transport projects that we actually need rather than roads to nowhere…..

14 comments on “The convention economy”

  1. tracey 1

    It seens this is what voters want… or have been convinced its what they want

  2. BM 2

    All tourism growth will be coming via China, as you probably know.

    Shame you chaps are willing to jeopardize that in your lust for power.

    • fender 2.1

      Can’t see the bit where it says Chinese conventions have not been catered for, or where future ones won’t be.

      How does having doubts about conventions bringing great prosperity = lust for power?

    • Galeandra 2.2

      Address the point, try not to be a total twat. How is a casino-cum- convention centre going to stack up as an investment on weak international demand, especially when you add the on-going costs in the details of the ‘deal’ ?
      This smacks of the prestige projects (hotels, convention centres, super highways etc) that afflicted so many third-world nations back in the 60’s – maybe they had the sort of petty egotists ruling them that we are afflicted with today.

    • tricledrown 2.3

      blinkered monetarist The increasing price of fuel and the continual slow down in the Chinese economy makes your assumption a load of crock!
      Don,t forget the yuan is coming out of control by the state under their new leader who is more right wing on economic policies!
      As well the subprime mortgage’s market in china is being reigned in which will slow their economy a lot more!

    • millsy 2.4

      So youll be waving your little Chinese flag when the PLA troops march up Queen St then?

      Holding your portrait of Deng “To get rich is glorious” Xiaoping?

      Just remember what they do to collaborators, thats all. I hear that some pretty brutal things happened in France in 1944…

  3. Lanthanide 3

    “because convention organisers are just so excited to add an extra grand to each of their attendees’ flight costs.”

    More like $2-3 grand for return flights, and generally 2 extra days travel time total.

  4. Rosetinted 4

    There should be a nicely engraved or carved plaque giving due honour to the name of John Key for being responsible for obtaining this useful attractive semi- public edifice.

  5. Well they can and will be used as impromptu prison camps when is all goes to shite! Did it in Chile with football stadions and in New Orleans with Katrina.

    The one in Hamilton has 50 toilet blocks throughout the center while only the ground floor is in use for the odd convention. God knows where the money came from to build that monstrosity and did I mention there is now a fence around the Rugby field from Wall to wall conveniently connecting the field (Which is never used from what I can see) with the center?

    But I’m sure that is just me being a conspiracy theorist. Governments don’t do that to their own citizens after all.

  6. bad12 7

    Totally agree with all you post,except,(yawn, except, here he goes again), the bit about the ‘housing bubble, assuming here you are talking about Labour’s Kiwibuild,

    Dave’s,(the incumbent),announcement will take a small % of the heat from the ‘bubble’, but, depending on what you consider the Kiwibuild can actually deliver in the way of actual cost per house the % of the heat in the ‘bubble’ that is removed is debatable,

    i would pick that in Auckland the cost of such a build will come in at 350-400 thousand a home, while that will somewhat stall the ‘bubble’, my view is that ‘stall’ will only be temporary,

    Labour is talking here of putting people, in the main, with middle class incomes onto the ‘property ladder’,once on that property ladder these people will in 5 years time have the equity in their Kiwibuild property which will allow them to seek a second property as rental income,

    Not all those who gain the fortune of a Kiwibuild property will do this just as not all ‘middle class’ people own rental property, but, enough of them will which will simply ensure that Auckland house prices remain over-inflated,

    PS, Labours Kiwibuild as as i can ascertain will rely upon those so blessed funding the buying of these houses on what???, dare i suggest foreign debt…

  7. Wayne (a different one) 8


    [lprent: Speculating on the in real life names of identities is not allowed. Especially since the morons doing it are usually wrong because they are quoting that liar of the record – whaleoil.

    Banned for three weeks, one for speculating on an identity, a second for trying to do it on an author, and a third because you clearly need to have time to read the policy. I’m not sure that two weeks will be enough and I don’t envisage that you can keep your finger away from your worm-ridden arse long enough to look up the long words. ]

    • bad12 8.1

      LOLZ, a spanking well deserved, i just put up a comment about Wayne being an inmate of a 1800’s psychiatric patient which i had time to delete seeing it got what it was asking for,

      No need to wreck the post by leaving it there…

  8. millsy 9

    I really think that New Zealand can do much much better than earning minimum wage, waiting on fat, lazy wealthy tourists hand and foot, while they continually bitch about how surly we are because we dont take any crap from people just because they have more money than we do.

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