OTTAWA, June 2, 2018 /CNW/ - The Honourable Bardish Chagger, Leader of the Government in the House of Commons and Minister of Small Business and Tourism, issued the following statement marking the wrap-up of Tourism Week 2018:
"Tourism Week 2018 has been exceptional, just as 2017 was for the Canadian tourism industry. Canadians from coast to coast to coast shared what makes their communities unique for visitors and showcased their hidden gems. They told us why tourism matters—the theme of this year's Tourism Week—and so did the members of the tourism industry, which is more vibrant than ever in Canada.
"Tourism matters to the nearly 1.8 million Canadians whose jobs are supported by this industry. It matters to young Canadians, who find more employment in tourism than in any other industry. And it matters to the nearly 200,000 entrepreneurs—mostly small businesses—who have built their livelihoods around tourism and the visitor economy.
"With 20.8 million tourists arriving in 2017, last year was the best year ever for Canadian tourism. We broke a new record for international tourism to Canada. There has never been a better opportunity for us to showcase our country's must-see destinations and celebrate the unique attractions, experiences and adventures we have to offer.
"During Tourism Week, which is organized by the Tourism Industry Association of Canada, I met with tourism industry leaders and stakeholders to get their input on issues affecting businesses in the tourism industry and to discuss the progress being made on national tourism issues. Our government recognizes the importance of tourism as an economic driver in our communities.
"As part of the 2018 Canada-China Year of Tourism (CCYT), I announced the launch of a CCYT-themed photo contest in collaboration with Canadian Geographic. We've asked Canadians to submit photos of little-known corners of the country as a way to promote Canada as a year-round tourist destination. I can't wait to see the entries and discover new places!
"This is shaping up to be a very exciting year so far. Preliminary estimates show that 3.1 million tourists visited Canada from January to March 2018—the best first quarter on record.
"The Government of Canada launched Canada's New Tourism Vision just over a year ago, and it's clear our plan is working. We will continue to work with provinces, territories and the tourism sector to grow the industry and create good middle-class jobs.
"I offer my sincere thanks to all who made 2017 a year for the history books, and I look forward to an even more incredible year in 2018."
SOURCE Innovation, Science and Economic Development Canada
For further information: Sandra Aubé, Director of Communications, Office of the Minister of Small Business and Tourism, 343-998-5328; Media Relations, Innovation, Science and Economic Development Canada, 343-291-1777, [email protected]