Christchurch, Canterbury, and South Island tourism has a
positive future following the devastation of February's earthquake,
with the announcement of a tourism partnership between Christchurch
International Airport Ltd , Christchurch & Canterbury Tourism
and the Ministry of Economic Development set to drive the industry
forward and out of its current crisis.
"We are currently in the midst of the biggest crisis that South
Island tourism has ever faced, and it is imperative that we have a
strong and functional tourism body in the months and years to come,
to work with the industry and to ensure Christchurch doesn't
disappear off the tourist map", says CIAL Chief Executive Jim
"Undeniably, Christchurch has faced significant destruction from
the recent earthquake, but throughout the city, the region and the
greater South Island, there is a desire for tourism to rebound
quickly, and we need to ensure we have a strong voice to
communicate this internationally", says Mr Boult.
To drive the revitalisation of the South Island's tourism
industry, CIAL has offered support and funding to CCT through the
provision of office space, IT, human resource and administration
support for the organisation's staff. CIAL will also continue
to provide support for regional marketing campaigns designed to
promote South Island tourism to international markets, which are at
risk of suffering significantly from a decrease in inbound tourism
"March inbound passenger numbers to the South Island, for
example, were down in excess of 20% on March last year. With
figures such as these, it is hugely important that we work together
to retain our international air services", says Mr Boult.
"Each of our international airlines is committed to Christchurch
while there is demand for their services, but any international
concern about the state of South Island tourism must be immediately
addressed to ensure the ongoing retention of these crucial
services. With over 90% of tourism arrivals into the South
Island coming through Christchurch Airport, it is clear that our
tourism industry and the wider South Island economy depends on CIAL
maintaining these services."
"Through this partnership, we will ensure that our
regional tourism organisation is in the best possible shape to
clearly communicate to our international markets that Christchurch
and the South Island is open for business, now and in the coming
months and years as we rebuild our city and our tourism industry",
says Mr Boult.