COUNCIL INVESTMENT IN TOURISM PAYS BACK
An economic impact analysis of the i-SITE visitor information network shows that nationally for every $1 of public funds invested they generate an average return of $8.70 in GDP value.
Within the Manawatu-Whanganui region the impact is even greater with local i-SITEs generating an economic return of $11.70 per $1 of public funds invested.
Ruapehu mayor Don Cameron said that the analysis clearly demonstrated the value of Council’s investment in its two i-SITEs in Taumarunui and Ohakune.
“Tourism and visitor services are a central plank to Ruapehu’s future economic prosperity,” he said.
“It is clear that the i-SITE network is making a positive economic contribution to the Ruapehu economy by making the visitor experience more enjoyable and convenient and in doing so facilitating visitor spending.”
“The importance of Council continuing to invest in tourism is underpinned by the recent release of the government funded Manawatu-Whanganui Regional Growth Study which identified the visitor industry as a key opportunity for growing investment, incomes and employment in Ruapehu.”
Mayor Cameron noted that the simple GDP return identified in the i-SITE economic impact analysis was only part of the overall range of benefits that the i-SITE’s provided to Ruapehu.
“The investment return to Ruapehu ratepayers will be in-fact much higher than the measured return in GDP value as the analysis did not take into account all the monetary and non-monetary impacts the i-SITEs have,” he said.
“These include wider economic benefits such as; the value of future return visits, the positive perception of Ruapehu that could support investment decisions, the social value an i-SITE has in our small communities, the marketing value of i-SITEs, etc”
“Most all of these benefits delivered are also true for Council’s investment in our Regional Tourism Organisation (RTO) Visit Ruapehu.”
“As part of Council’s recently adopted economic development strategy we want to see Visit Ruapehu, our i-SITE network and Ruapehu’s tourism operators work more closely together.”
“Ruapehu tourism has fantastic growth prospects but taking full advantage of them will require all stakeholders to come together and work cooperatively on a shared vision for the future.”
“Adopting a collective approach will help ensure that the limited resources we have available for tourism investment will deliver the maximum benefit back to ratepayers, operators and the district.”
For more information see: http://goo.gl/uKy45q