The tourism industry contributes a lot to the economy of a country. In New Zealand, the tourism sector is considered the largest export sector. Damien O’Connor is the former Minter of Tourism in New Zealand. According to him, the future of tourism in New Zealand depends on values like sustainability and commitment to serve with greater value to each and every citizen touring or any traveller coming to New Zealand from abroad.
The industry is one of the most significant contributors to the economy of New Zealand. Hence the emphasis is placed on developing tourism in New Zealand that is sustainable and impacts the experience of the travellers positively.
Ministry of tourism of New Zealand revealed that tourism in the country generates revenue of $ 14.1 billion annually to the country’s Gross Domestic Product and employs around 10 million people directly and around 2 million indirectly. For 2008, New Zealand received 2,453,555 travellers coming from abroad who spent around $8.8 billion here.
Therefore, such levels should be maintained by conserving and preserving the resources that are exploited to maintain the infrastructure supporting tourism. New Zealand’s main attractions that have natural aesthetics are maintained regularly to develop them as a travelling destination.
What is Sustainable Tourism?
According to New Zealand’s Tourism Strategy of 2015, Sustainable Tourism constitutes: –
- Visitors and travellers shall enjoy their stay here and they should desire to travel to New Zealand again when they are provided with unique, affordable and sustainable solutions and travel plans that fit their budget and needs.
- The tourism industry must make a profit and earn the trust of investors so that they can invest there securely. The sector shall endeavour to protect the interest of the investors and try to include as many employment opportunities for the workforce as possible.
- Sustainable tourism will preserve the natural environment of New Zealand. The introduction of this trend will decrease the carbon footprint of the industry.
- The travel and hospitality industry will work according to the needs of society. Society and the industry will develop a symbiotic relationship with each other by nurturing and mutually benefitting each other.
The parliament of New Zealand has expressed its concerns over the encroachment of natural resources and their depletion because of tourism. The Parliamentary Commission of Environment also published a report that identified three potential threats to the environment from the tourism industry.
The PCE formulated an action plan as a guide to the Resource Management Act to be followed by the industries to check their actions and devise sustainable ways of protecting and conserving the environment. These offer immense benefits to the industry also. If the damage is contained, the country will continue to attract international visitors and increase their tourism.