Visit Ruapehu forum gives tourism operators platform to possess say on future and economy
More than 100 people representing Ruapehu tourism operations gathered at Chateau Tongariro in the Whakapapa Village this week for the Visit Ruapehu forum and annual meeting.
Key speakers included Ruapehu mayor Don Cameron, Ruapehu District Council (RDC) economic development staff, key township and operators business organisations.
They spoke about subjects like the impact of Ruapehu’s growing visitor economy and their confidence for future years.
Cameron said the Ruapehu visitor sector is performing strongly and is likely to continue to achieve this.
“The main element takeaway for Ruapehu businesses, iwi and communities attempting to grow the marketplace and make best use of the opportunities this presents is for more communication, co-ordination and co-operation between all stakeholders.
“The significance of everybody working together can’t be overstated.”
For recent years Visit Ruapehu spent some time working with local, regional, national and government partners such as for example Tourism NZ, Ruapehu Alpine Lifts, Air NZ, Kiwi Rail and much more.
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This has meant dealing with some partners that historically could have been viewed as competitive to Ruapehu, such as for example other regional tourism organisations.
“Although some decisions have already been controversial, such as for example our support for joint-venture tourism marketing campaigns and the brand new Whakapapa gondola project, the outcomes backed by official accommodation and spending data validate this process clearly,” Cameron said.
“This plan has been central to Ruapehu successfully gaining announced government funding support for key projects of over $15.3 million toward key infrastructure projects over this era.”
Cameron addressed what he considers are misinformed comments on tourism that appear to keep appearing, despite evidence to the contrary that the Ruapehu visitor sector is delivering.
“The hard data implies that the Ruapehu visitor sector is punching above its weight and council is focused on making certain it continues to take action,” Cameron said.
“We can not however afford to let complacency hold us back, with many significant developments and changes coming such as for example iwi co-governance arrangements and new technologies.”
RDC invites all stakeholders in visitors sector to utilize it among others in helping to keep momentum and the positive impact visitors economy is wearing the growth of jobs, incomes, opportunities and investment.