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Who’s Tourism Minister again?

Written By: - Date published: 11:15 am, June 25th, 2013 - 45 comments
Categories: john key, tourism - Tags:

Back in 2008, a bright new thing called John Key said that, if he became Prime Minister, he would take the Tourism portfolio. He said “it’s an industry that’s particularly important in maintaining and boosting this country’s employment levels and growth prospects” and “we can do an awful lot better”. International tourism revenue has fallen 20% since 2008, $2 billion a year from its peak.

It’s not like this started with Key. But he did promise to turn it around. And he’s failed completely. Worse, the number of tourists is increasing while the amount that they’re spending is falling. That means we take on all the infrastructure and environmental costs of their visits but get less money in return. When’s someone going to call Key out on that?

tourism spendingsource

45 comments on “Who’s Tourism Minister again?”

  1. Tamati 1

    Blame the high dollar. Simple

    • Colonial Viper 1.1

      The Hobbit is the start of an upward trend, I can tell.

      • Tamati 1.1.1

        High dollar hits tourism operators twice over.

        More expensive for foreigners to visit New Zealand. So fewer come, and those who do spend less.

        Cheaper for Kiwis to head overseas. So fewer domestic tourists.

      • weka 1.1.2

        “The Hobbit is the start of an upward trend, I can tell.”

        Don’t worry CV, give it six months, it just needs time to pick up and get going :-)

  2. dewithiel 2

    He’s only interested in the sort of tourism that’s associated with Sky City. Couldn’t give a rat’s arse about the 100% pure stuff and all that hokum because it’s only aspirational, not really profitable. As for employment, well, he’s not interested in serfs and, anyway, all his friends are employed and well-remunerated in their crony capitalist jobs.

  3. BLiP 3

    Heh – John Key Minister of Tourism promoting New Zealand on the international stage . . .

    – 100% Pure Bullshit

    – jokes about Maori cannibalism

    – slobbers over Liz Hurley

    – using the word “gay” as a form of insult

    – describing David Beckham as “thick as batshit”

    – talking up the Korean conflict

    . . . such is his mastery at the promotion of New Zealand that under the GCSB legislation he is forcing though parliament he would be a likely candidate for further investigation by the spies on the grounds of economic treason.

  4. Rogue Trooper 4

    -evident now, the growth in middle-class Chinese, gonna explode over the next 20 years.
    -their tourism needs (as often examined in the MSM) are quite different from those of the western tourist.
    -cranes of a feather; asian restaurants, food halls, quick visits to attractions, prudent with money, comparitively conservative.
    -may have to re-jig a great deal of what is on offer, as has also been commented on by mainstream journalists.
    It’s all about Face. 😀
    (maybe Paula could donate her karaoke machine, and put it to better use).

    • Colonial Viper 4.1

      Its quite possible that growth in the Chinese middle class is going to *implode*

      We will know in the next 6-12 months.

      • Rogue Trooper 4.1.1

        I don’t think so Colonel; numbers my friend, numbers; see the Guardian article linked concerning Australia yesterday; tourism and education. Keep the ‘numbers’ in mind, and what we all do when we have expired the distractions to be had at home. 😉

    • Tamati 4.2

      That’s a common misconception that all Asian tourists want to be stuffed into buses and ferried from one Asian restaurant to the next, briefly stopping at Mt Cook on the way.

      Generally the ‘first wave’ of tourist demand these pre-packaged deals, but the market eventually matures and tourists become more independent and out going.

      • Rogue Trooper 4.2.1

        they are a ‘mature’ market indeed. discerning.

        • Tamati

          Not yet. But will do, just as the American, German and Japanese markets have.

          • Rogue Trooper

            as quoted in yesterdays link “London is closer…”; there is a little anglophile in many of us.

  5. Rob 5

    Looks like the steepest rate of decline was 03 – 06. It should not have been as this was well before GFC and the dollar was much more attractive for tourists. I wonder what went wrong.

    • Allyson 5.1

      Graph shows a confirmed downward trend from 2003. I would be interested in any data that would explain this

      • David H 5.1.1

        Not really it as hovering a around 6.5-7 Billion until 2008/9 where it plummeted to 5.5 Billion

    • dumrse 5.2

      I’m guessing JK was in power during those years was he ?

  6. tc 6

    Who is the clown on the right, I recognise fozzy bear.

  7. Wayne (a different one) 7

    Source – Labour Party number crunchers?

    Of course, conveniently tweaked to suit a particular slant!

    It’s amazing what you can do with stats.

    This release, at the same time Tourism New Zealand announce, total arrivals up 5.8% on the corresponding period last year and Holiday arrivals up 9.4%.

    Our Tourism Minister, Mr Key seems to be making a very good fist of it. Go figure.

    Oh shit! not another own goal – how many now in the last few weeks – too many to count.

    [lprent: I guess you didn’t read the post too well. The source in in the link on the left below the chart. Looks like something out of the MED = Ministry of Economic Development.

    Please don’t waste my time having to doing your reading for you. Be less lazy and more observant.. ]

    • Winston Smith 7.1

      Don’t be bringing in your facts from tourism nz, its not helpful

    • felix 7.2

      Slowly now Wayne: Yes there are more arrivals, but they’re spending so little that even though there are more of them we’re making less money from them in total.

      Yes indeed, amazing what you can do with statistics when there are idiots like you around to swallow them.

  8. Allyson 8

    You guys seem to have an hobbitual dislike of our fine PM :)

  9. Bill 9

    Cruise ships are apparently a fairly cheap way to ‘holiday’. And down this way, cruise ship numbers are (unforunately from my point of view) healthy. But people on cruise ships put absolutely no money into camping grounds, B&B or any other tourist type of accomodation -that all belongs to the cruise ship company. What they do is pay up front for a day tour….so no ‘passing trade’ from tourists in camper vans or what not. And the operators who run the tours (if they’re ‘wise’) expand their operations to provide food or whatever else if they can. And that’s fine if you have an enterprise that’s lucky enough to be in the ‘right’ location (ie, fairly coastal – near a cruise ship terminal) and to be ‘in the loop’. Otherwise, you’re screwed.

    So NZ has more people coming into the country. But for shorter periods of time. And a lot of the money they would have spent into the NZ economy is instead going to the cruise ship companies. And a lot of the rest is going to a fairly select few who are in a position to ‘win’ tours from the cruise ships.

    I just wish the cost of bunker fuel would sky rocket…

    • Hayden 9.1

      So NZ has more people coming into the country. But for shorter periods of time.

      Any idea how the passport thing works when travelling from overseas to NZ? Are they processed as an entry at each city? If so that could be skewing the numbers a little bit.

      A quick Google isn’t that informative…

      • Hayden 9.1.1

        I thought your quote included something about cruise ships, but apparently not. I meant on a cruise ship, e.g., entering at Auckland, then Tauranga, then Wellington, etc.

    • rosy 9.2

      So NZ has more people coming into the country. But for shorter periods of time

      Any idea if New Zealanders living overseas are counted as tourists when they return to see family/holiday?

  10. Paul 10

    Key became tourism minister to push through the Gambling legislation. He has succeeded in bringing the kind of tourists Sky City and his corporate masters want for this country.
    This country, thanks to puppet Key, is going down the gurgler fast.
    And the sheep of New Zealand are asleep, watching the All Blacks and wondering who’ll win X Factor.

    • Yes 10.1

      Um the same people where asleep when labour built the sky city..lol

      • the pigman 10.1.1

        LOL – how old are you, Yes? Either too young to remember the casino coming up in the 90s or too old and suffering from senile dementia.

  11. Yes 11

    Oh dear let’s not forget that the GFC might of had an effect…like didn’t that start in 2008 hmmm you seriously look at things in isolation.

  12. He’s Minister of Tourism. Hawaiian Tourism – http://fmacskasy.wordpress.com/2011/12/20/john-key-minister-for-tourism-mia/

    Unlike Helen Clark, he spends his down-time on a beach in Hawaii. Not exactly a vote of confidence in our own tourism industry. Clark at least spent (most?) her holidays here in NZ.

    • Yes 12.1

      No she didn’t..quite few shots of her climbing mountains

      • Yes 12.1.1

        Oh the UN is based in Timaru isn’t it?

        • Richard

          7 Things John Key could do (or should have done) as Minister of Tourism:

          1. Lowered himself to have a holiday in NZ for a change (Domestic Tourism is actually a huge part of the industry. Showcasing NZ’s regions might encourage Kiwis to holiday at home)
          2. Kick Gerry Brownlee’s fat arse for insulting Finland – we don’t need that perception of arrogance (even if Finland is only a small source of tourists)
          3. Try to appreciate the depth and breadth of the tourism industry in NZ, and why people chose to come so far to our country when other desirable (and cheaper) countries are closer.
          John Key’s Koru Lounge perception of tourism is naïve and damaging.
          4. Don’t make such a tit of yourself with the international media (We really should offer Stephen Sackur residency – why can’t our own media put that sort of blowtorch on our politicians).
          5. Of course we are not 100% Pure, but people wouldn’t be calling you on this if your Government’s actions weren’t so impure (mining in National Parks, Kyoto, gutting of DoC, weakness on international environmental issues to name but a few).
          6. Try to encourage sustainable increases in Tourism. Don’t go for the mass tourism bonanza markets (e.g. 1 million Chinese in 10 years or whatever). Aim for the niche market in countries such as China. Chinese people do exist that want to visit NZ, self drive and explore the regions. But they won’t come if you fill the place with bus tours. Offer yourself as something different in a place like China. We have seen boom and bust in many Asian tourism markets (Japanese tourists in the 80’s and 90’s for example).
          7. Recognise that a budget tourist who stays for three months might spend more that a Chinese tourist (average stay 6.5 days) and that more of that money is likely to stay in local communities.

      • Te Reo Putake 12.1.2

        We have mountains in NZ, fool. HC alternated her holidays between here and overseas. Of course it could be said that Dunnokeyo holidays exclusively in NZ and does his real work in Hawaii.

    • lprent 12.2

      Clark at least spent (most?) her holidays here in NZ.

      About half when she was PM. These days she seems to spend all her holidays here.

  13. Whatever next 13

    Not a very big basket to put all your eggs in John

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