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Travel industry experts provide Minister Joly with ideas on growing tourism

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The Honorable Mélanie Joly, Minister of Tourism, Official Languages and La Francophonie, was pleased to hear from front-line tourism and travel industry experts during her week-long listening tour that concluded today in Kelowna, British Columbia. The tour was the Minister’s first opportunity to engage with a wide selection of people working in Canada’s travel and tourism industry and to gather their valuable ideas and experiences that will help in developing a new federal tourism strategy.

Minister Joly began her tour in Niagara Falls, Ontario, where she announced the creation of the Advisory Council on Jobs and the Visitor Economy. The Council will help identify important issues facing the tourism sector in Canada and will also recommend new ways of increasing Canadian tourism opportunities and competitiveness globally. She continued her listening tour with a series of roundtables with local tourism officials in Winnipeg and Churchill, Manitoba; Rankin Inlet, Nunavut; and Vancouver, Victoria and Kelowna, British Columbia.

As a result of these roundtables, the Minister gained important insight on what is needed to further grow Canada’s visitor economy. Expanding tourism opportunities in Canada will help attract new visitors while creating good middle-class jobs in every region.

In addition to hosting the roundtables, Minister Joly met with front-line tourism industry workers—from staff and guests at a local restaurant popular among Winnipeg’s Filipino community to Inuit artists in Rankin Inlet to entrepreneurs who welcome tourists in Vancouver’s historic Chinatown.

The Minister also announced nearly $2 million in funding to support tourism-related projects in northern Manitoba and Nunavut’s Kivalliq region during her stops in Churchill and Rankin Inlet. These investments will help create middle-class jobs in the tourism sector of both regions and increase local capacity to welcome visitors from around the world.

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“Over the coming months, I will meet with Canadians to hear their ideas on how we can grow Canada’s visitor economy sustainably while creating good middle-class jobs. As I’ve expressed throughout this week, we want those who work in Canada’s tourism sector to feel confident about their future and proud of what they do. Let’s show the world what Canada has to offer.”

– The Honorable Mélanie Joly, Minister of Tourism, Official Languages and La Francophonie

Quick facts

• Tourism represents 2% of Canada’s gross domestic product.

• Tourism supports 1.8 million jobs in Canada.

• The number of Indigenous tourism businesses has grown from 1,579 businesses in 2015 to 1,878 in 2017.

• China accounts for one fifth of the world’s total tourism spending and is one of Canada’s fastest-growing tourism markets.