Reports that Tourism Minister Stuart Nash has said a travel bubble with Australia won’t happen until January next year if we’re lucky is creating confusion and will mean many more businesses face closure, National’s Tourism spokesperson Todd McClay says.
“Our tourism businesses continue to struggle, they need leadership from the Government.
“Tourism New Zealand have estimated a trans-Tasman bubble with Australia would allow tourism revenue to quickly recover to 70 per cent of pre-Covid levels, which would mean many businesses could afford to stay open and keep Kiwis in jobs.
“Australia has offered extra support to their tourism sector including half price flights to boost local tourism. It shows that unlike New Zealand, Australia has worked out tourism is worth saving.
“The comparison between Australia and New Zealand’s response to the ailing sector is stark.
“Minister Nash’s comments have clearly struck a chord with Scenic Circle Hotels, they’re now closing four of their hotels.
“Some tourism revenues have dropped by 80 per cent or more but further jobs losses and businesses closures are avoidable if we opened up a travel bubble with Australia.
“Right now Australian tourists have no choice but to spend their money in their own country, places like Queenstown, Rotorua, Te Anau and the West Coast are crying out for this investment.
“Australia opened a bubble up with New Zealand in October, it can be done. New Zealand’s tourism sector is depending on it.”
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