New Zealand tourism chief praises UK travel trade for Christchurch support

New Zealand tourism chief praises UK travel trade for Christchurch support

Tourism New Zealand’s chief executive Kevin Bowler has thanked the UK travel trade for its support following the Christchurch earthquake. He praised the industry for reassuring customers that only Christchurch city and Lyttelton were affected and that other areas were operating as normal. “Our sympathy and concern is extended to Cantabrians, visitors to the area on 22 February, and to business owners, including tourism operators, affected by the earthquake,” said Bowler. “We have been overwhelmed by the kindness and support which New Zealand has received from the United Kingdom and our sincere thanks goes to everyone who has been involved over the last two weeks, we really appreciate your help.” He said it was unclear how long it would take to rebuild Christchurch but said the region was keen to retain its strong tourism industry, which is worth NZ$9.5bn to the economy. “New Zealand is used to welcoming large numbers of international tourists each year including about 235,000 from the United Kingdom,” said Bowler. “A strong economy is what we need to ensure Christchurch can get back on its feet as quickly as possible and tourism is vital to this.”

Mark Elliott
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Mark Elliott
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