Tourism and Conservation Fund policy from Labour

Written By: - Date published: 7:50 am, August 29th, 2017 - 7 comments
Categories: election 2017, labour - Tags:

Labour has announced a Tourism and Conservation Infrastructure Fund.

In a land of just over 5 million people, we get more than three million people a year from all over the world visiting. International tourists spent $10b here last year, supporting more than 300,000 jobs.

The economic impact sounds great, but it’s causing strain in rural regions and small towns with small councils and the Department of Conservation.

From Northland to Southland the Department of Conservation in particular takes a huge burden and receives very little of the income benefits that tourism brings to New Zealand (The only way I managed to get a booking on the Milford Track for November this year was by diarising the day and minute that DoC said they would be accepting bookings, then furiously clicking the mouse until all the world’s booking operators took a breather for a millisecond. It’s going to be a crowded set of huts up there).

Labour is saying that it’s time to spread that tourist impact load from the taxpayers and ratepayers of New Zealand onto those who are receiving the benefit of fantastic holidays in New Zealand.

Labour is proposing:

  • 60 per cent of the Fund ($45m per year) will be used to grow our tourism industry, and
  • 40 per cent ($30m per year) will be used to protect our biodiversity and ensure conservation is properly resourced.
  • The $45m per year for growing the tourism industry will be split with
    • 60 per cent going towards funding tourism infrastructure projects ($27m per year),
    • 20 per cent to training ($9m per year) and the remaining
    • 20 per cent for support in high demand areas like Queenstown ($9m per year).
  • The $30m per year for conservation will be used to increase biodiversity funding and for conservation infrastructure.


7 comments on “Tourism and Conservation Fund policy from Labour”

  1. red-blooded 1

    A great policy – it’s all very well constantly repeating the mantra that tourism is the backbone of our economy, but if it’s causing problems for our regional infrastructure and conservation estate then we need to do something proactive about it, and this looks like a sensible approach.

  2. red-blooded 3

    …Your point being? It’s hardly surprising that parties with similar perspectives on social and environmental issues will come up with some overlapping policy. Surely this is a good thing – more likely to actually get implemented? Besides, policy like this is the result of months discussion and work within the party. Just because the Greens policy was announced first doesn’t mean it formed the basis of the Labour policy.

    Also the Greens want a 75:25 split between conservation and tourism infrastructure. Labour has it weighted slightly the other way – 60:40 infrastructure, conservation.

  3. alwyn 4

    Why on earth are the Labour Party being so kind to Australians?
    This policy, as announced, will automatically exclude all Australian citizens or permanent residents from having to pay.
    When they arrive they are, at the point of entry, automatically given a New Zealand Resident visa. That automatically classifies them as being New Zealand residents and they can claim they have that status..
    The published policy says that all New Zealand citizens and residents will be exempt from the fee. That means that nearly all the tourists we get from Australia will be exempt, which is about half the total of all tourists.
    Who is the genius who has devised the policy? Was it a two minute, back of an envelope exercise to try and have something to put up against the National Party proposal?

    How is it meant to apply to only tourists anyway? Do they automatically classify a business traveller, not holding Australian citizenship or permanent residence, arriving in Auckland from Sydney and going back on the same day as a “tourist” and hit him or her up for the fee?

    Will SIA or Emirates air crew, here for a few hours between flights get wacked with a fee? On the description of the policy they will also be included in the category of “tourists”.

  4. Ian 5

    The process of soliciting and gathering funds is known as fundraising. This is just another poorly thought out TAX. If it moves ,lets tax it .

    • One Anonymous Bloke 5.1

      You’re all about other people obeying the law until it comes time to pay your taxes and then you whinge and whine like a crybaby. It’s pathetic and deserving of widespread ridicule.

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