New regional tourism funding available
Tauranga and the Bay of Plenty’s tourism industry could benefit from Government funding that boosts regional tourism businesses and infrastructure, says local MPs.
Tauranga MP Simon Bridges and Bay of Plenty MP Todd Muller are encouraging local tourism providers to apply for Government funding which is aimed at boosting tourism in New Zealand.
$4 million from the Tourism Growth Partnership (TGP) has been set aside for regional tourism projects and the Government’s annual $3 million Regional Mid-sized Tourism Facilities Grant Fund is now open for applications.
Tourism in Tauranga and the wider Bay of Plenty is booming. Last year there were more than 207,000 international guest nights in the Western Bay and 3.1 million in the Bay of Plenty, with more than $744 million spent by visitors.
“People are coming from across New Zealand and around the world to experience some of the amazing attractions and experiences we have on offer,” Mr Bridges said.
“These visitors boost the local economy, help create local jobs and provide endless opportunities for our great hospitality businesses. However, it’s vital we ensure growing visitor numbers are managed sustainably and that our region has the capacity to continue reaping the benefits of tourism. This funding is an important part of supporting this.”
The Regional Mid-sized Tourism Facilities Grant Fund helps manage the growing demand from tourists by providing communities with new or enhanced smaller infrastructure such as carparks and restrooms.
The TGP is a joint-funding partnership between the Government and the private sector to increase the value of existing tourism projects or to get new projects underway.
Mr Muller said tourism providers in the Bay of Plenty were doing a great job, but said there was always opportunities to improve.
“Together, these programmes help regional tourist centres maximise their tourism potential, so I urge communities and tourist operators throughout Tauranga and the Bay of Plenty to find out more information.
“It’s great to see the Government continuing to support tourism in New Zealand. Since 2008, we have invested an unprecedented $700 million in tourism and tourism promotion.
“This is helping fuel rapid growth in the sector. A record 3.34 million visitors came to New Zealand in the year ending July 2016, and spent an all-time high of $10.3 billion,” Mr Muller said.
For more information about applying for the Regional Mid-sized Tourism Facilities Grant Fund, visit: http://www.mbie.govt.nz/info-services/sectors-industries/tourism/regional-mid-sized-tourism-facilities-grant-fund.
For more information about the TGP, visit http://www.mbie.govt.nz/info-services/sectors-industries/tourism/tourism-growth-partnership.
Anita Moran 022 189 5450
Shannon Stewart 04 817 9431