Boost for Southland tourism

Great South GM for Tourism and Events, Bobbi Brown

A significant allocation of funding for Southland’s Regional Tourism Organisations (RTOs) is set to play a pivotal role in the sector’s rebuild.

Today the Government announced up to $20.2 million has been made available for the countries 31 RTOs as part of the $400 million Tourism Recovery Fund.

This includes Great South as Southland’s Regional Tourism Organisation and Regional Development Agency and will allow the organisation to leverage greater support for the local industry through destination management and planning.

Great South Chief Executive Graham Budd said the injection of funding was a much-needed boost for the Southland tourism industry.

“COVID-19 has presented a challenging and unprecedented situation for our tourism industry and this one-off allocation to support its re-start, and ongoing viability, reflects this,”

The Tourism Recovery Fund includes the development of a national domestic marketing campaign which will support Great South in building on its exiting promotional work to create a compelling offer for people to travel south.

“With the New Zealand border closed and months of restrictions on travel throughout New Zealand, the best thing we can do for our local operators and tourism industry representatives is connect them with customers and this funding package will support us in connecting with locals, regional and domestic markets and encouraging them to spend in the south,”

Great South GM for Tourism and Events, Bobbi Brown, said the Government’s investment is a boost of confidence in the role RTOs play and means greater support for local communities and tourism operators.

“Today’s announcement will give Southland’s tourism sector, and its range of wonderful activities, attractions and operators confidence in the reimagination of the whole sector and will help us to play a pivotal role in the region’s economic restart,”

The Tourism Recovery Fund has been established to help businesses transition into a post COVID-19 environment and protect New Zealand’s strategic assets.