Minister Mélanie Joly launches innovative plan to grow tourism sector revenue by 25% by 2025
MONTRÉAL, May 21, 2019 /CNW/ - Canada's tourism sector is booming, bringing in record numbers of international visitors in 2017 and 2018. It's our number one service export and accounts for one in ten jobs. The Government of Canada is committed to building on this momentum and investing in tourism to create middle class jobs, grow Canada's economy, and bring new opportunities and pride to communities looking for a chance to show the world what they have.
That's why the Honourable Mélanie Joly, Minister of Tourism, Official Languages and La Francophonie, today unveiled Creating Middle Class Jobs: A Federal Tourism Growth Strategy, which will bolster growth and diversify the sector by enhancing and developing the unique experiences that attract tourists year-round to all regions of our country.
This strategy will empower communities of all sizes through short- and long-term measures by:
- providing $58.5 million in funding through the Canadian Experiences Fund to enhance Canada's tourism products and experiences;
- changing the way we invest in tourism by developing tourism investment groups where all levels of government will collaborate to invest more efficiently while meeting local priorities and identifying ways to raise private investment; and
- creating the new Tourism Industry Economic Strategy Table to provide a platform for government and industry leaders to collaborate on overcoming sector challenges.
These three pillars will take a whole-of-government approach to addressing barriers to growth such as lack of investment coordination and labour shortages.
These measures will position the sector to meet the strategy's ambitious targets by 2025 by increasing:
- tourism revenues by 25% to $128 billion;
- jobs directly related to tourism by 7.3%, creating 54,000 new jobs in the process;
- growth in the visitor economy to outpace the growth in the national economy;
- international arrivals during the winter and shoulder seasons by over 1 million; and
- the proportion of tourism revenue generated beyond Montréal, Toronto and Vancouver, the three big cities where tourism activity is currently concentrated.
Following the launch of the Federal Tourism Growth Strategy, Minister Joly will deliver an address and participate in a fireside chat at the Montreal Council on Foreign Relations.
"Our government knows that tourism helps every part of the country by creating good jobs for middle class families. We've seen many examples of communities transforming and diversifying their economies through tourism. That's why we've developed this strategy that will stimulate growth in the tourism sector through new and ongoing investments. We are committed to diversifying and expanding our country's tourism products and experiences to maximize the sector's potential year-round from coast to coast to coast."
– The Honourable Mélanie Joly, Minister of Tourism, Official Languages and La Francophonie
"The Federal Tourism Growth Strategy will unlock the tourism sector's potential, stimulating economic growth and creating more middle class jobs. In addition, with support from our regional development agencies, local tourism businesses will increasingly contribute to the success and vitality of communities across the country."
– The Honourable Navdeep Bains, Minister of Innovation, Science and Economic Development
"Our government is working hard to reduce red tape and make it easier for Canadian small business owners to start up, scale up and access new markets. With 99% of tourism businesses being small or medium-sized enterprises, the impact of the Federal Tourism Growth Strategy will be felt by Canadians across the country, including members of under-represented groups in our economy, such as women, Indigenous people, LGBTQ2+, and youth."
– The Honourable Mary Ng, Minister of Small Business and Export Promotion
- Tourism represents more than 2% of Canada's gross domestic product.
- Tourism supports more than 1.8 million jobs in Canada, with 56% of those being in rural areas.
- Total tourism revenues in 2018 from domestic and international travellers were $102.1 billion, an increase of 5.2% over 2017.
- In 2018, Canada welcomed a record 21.1 million international tourists, surpassing the previous year's record of 20.9 million by 1.2%.
May 21, 2019
GOVERNMENT OF CANADA'S NEW FEDERAL TOURISM STRATEGY EMPOWERS COMMUNITIES ACROSS THE COUNTRY TO CREATE JOBS FOR THE MIDDLE CLASS
Creating Middle Class Jobs: A Federal Tourism Growth Strategy will unleash the potential of tourism to drive economic growth and job creation year-round in all regions of the country through three pillars. The Strategy is founded on the recognition that every community has experiences to offer and can aspire to be a destination in its own right.
Pillar 1—Building Tourism in Canada's Communities
Both 2017 and 2018 were record years for tourism in Canada. The sector now supports more than 1.8 million jobs in communities large and small, and the Government of Canada is committed to providing support to continue its growth. As a result, the Government created the Canadian Experiences Fund (CEF), a $58.5-million initiative that will help communities create, improve or enhance tourism products, facilities and experiences.
Delivered by Canada's regional development agencies (RDA), the Fund will see investments made in products and experiences that showcase Canada's strengths, while also growing tourism beyond major cities and the summer season.
Projects will receive up to 100% of eligible costs.
The window for application will remain opened until funding runs out.
Categories and criteria
Investments made through the CEF will focus on five categories:
- expanding winter and shoulder-season tourism by funding projects such as onsite experiences development, tours, excursions, special events and tourism facilities;
- growing tourism in rural and remote communities by investing in projects such as community beautification, onsite experiences development in various locations (e.g. fisheries, wineries, breweries, farms), adventure tourism, ecotourism, agritourism, local product development, and local tourism facilities;
- increasing Indigenous tourism by investing in projects such as market readiness activities, onsite experiences development, the development of a line of consumer products, tours, festivals and special events;
- promoting inclusiveness, especially for the LGBTQ2 community, by supporting train-the-trainer programs and projects such as attractions, special events, festivals and market readiness activities; and
- boosting culinary and farm-to-table experiences by funding projects in areas such as culinary tourism trails, farmers markets and onsite experiences development in various locations (e.g. farms, fisheries, breweries, orchards).
Project proposals that also meet asset criteria may be given preference. These criteria pertain to skills development, job creation, and economic and environmental sustainability.
Pillar 2—Attracting Investment to the Visitor Economy
All levels of government have a role to play in tourism, but a lack of coordination among them means governments are not having as big of an impact on the sector as they could. To improve coordination among governments and help attract private investment in the sector, the Strategy will establish tourism investment groups in every region of Canada to enable the development of impactful tourism projects, including large-scale destination projects.
Co-led by Destination Canada and the RDAs, the groups will be adapted to each region. RDAs will leverage their existing partnerships to ensure a concerted effort, based on each region's needs.
These groups will provide a hook to entice private sector investment, both domestically and internationally, in big, ambitious tourism projects.
Other participants will include Parks Canada, Canadian Heritage and the Business Development Bank of Canada, as well as new federal partners such as the Export Development Bank and Invest in Canada.
The federal government will work through the tourism investment groups to become a more effective partner to each of the regions, enabling promising products to be developed while ensuring the alignment of investments. The groups will have a global market perspective, an understanding of the intragovernmental environment, a shared knowledge base and the capacity to harmonize priorities across organizations. Their objective will be to ensure a consistent approach to developing destinations regionally that enhances local community opportunities.
Pillar 3—A Renewed Focus on Public-Private Collaboration
Creating Middle Class Jobs: A Federal Tourism Growth Strategy recognizes the long-standing barriers to growing Canada's tourism sector—barriers that are not easily overcome in the short term. Stronger partnership with industry leaders is needed to tackle those challenges over the long term. For this reason, the Government has established the Tourism Industry Economic Strategy Table.
In Budget 2017, the Minister of Finance announced a new model for industry-government collaboration, focused on turning Canadian economic strengths into global advantages through the creation of Economic Strategy Tables. They represented a new approach to development in high-growth and high-potential sectors: advanced manufacturing, agri-food, clean technology, digital industries, health and biosciences, and resources of the future. Each Table was composed of industry leaders, including top CEOs, who set ambitious growth targets, identified sector-specific challenges and bottlenecks, and laid out an actionable roadmap for making the country an innovation leader in these sectors.
Budget 2019 formally recognized tourism as a high-growth, high-potential sector deserving its own Economic Strategy Table. As part of the Federal Tourism Growth Strategy, the new Table was launched in the spring of 2019. It provides a unique platform for targeted actions to stimulate and sustain growth in Canada's tourism sector. Government working collaboratively with industry in this way will ensure that tourism is on the front lines of economic policy-making so that challenges are effectively addressed and strategic opportunities are seized to grow the visitor economy and create good jobs for the middle class.
Critical areas the Table could address include the high cost of travelling to and within Canada, labour shortages in the sector and deepening investment. It could also look at competiveness, sustainability, the sharing economy and digital platforms.
Creating Middle Class Jobs: A Federal Tourism Growth Strategy sets out an all-of-government approach to grow Canada's visitor economy. It recognizes that international tourism is a vital contributor to the country's prosperity. And It is premised on tourism's capacity for rapid expansion — providing governments mobilize the right policies and investments, and private sector partners are ready to capitalize on the opportunities. Many government departments champion policies that support tourism growth.
SOURCE Innovation, Science and Economic Development Canada
For further information: Jeremy Ghio, Press Secretary, Office of the Minister of Tourism, Official Languages and La Francophonie, [email protected]; Media Relations, Innovation, Science and Economic Development Canada, 343-291-1777, [email protected]