Boston, MA -- (SBWIRE) -- 05/30/2014 -- BMI's New Zealand tourism report looks at a range of key indicators in this well-established market in a remote corner of the Asia Pacific region. Both inbound and outbound travel is expected to increase throughout our forecast period to 2018 as growth in the domestic and global economy boosts travel and ongoing infrastructure projects create a positive investment environment.
Tourists, both new and returning, are drawn to New Zealand by the country's extensive range of attractions, which offer an enormous variety of activities. The mountain ranges offer winter sports while beaches and attractive metropolitan cities mean summer sees no shortage of visitors, and the country avoids any seasonal slumps.
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New Zealand is also building its reputation as a sporting destination through high-profile events such as the Rugby World Cup. It also is hosting monster truck rallies, rugby and cricket tours, sailing regattas and cycling events such as the Forrest Grape Ride to further raise the country's status in the global market. Cultural events including the Pacifica Festival and The Golden Shears sheep-shearing competition also attract thousands of visitors annually and help to provide more sustainability to the market.
Arrivals to New Zealand suffered a decline during the worst of the global credit crunch, with its remote location making it an expensive long-haul destination. However, figures have largely recovered, and in 2014 we expect to see more than 2.8mn visitors to the country. Healthy annual growth means by 2018 we expect this figure to increase to 3.4mn, almost equalling the country's total population. The Asia Pacific region, and Australia in particular, are expected to continue to dominate the arrivals market, though we will see growth in arrivals from all regions.
Slow but steady GDP growth throughout our forecast period, combined with improving unemployment rates and higher private financial consumption, mean we are also forecasting increases in the number of outbound travellers, which is expected to reach just under 3.4mn in 2018, rivalling inbound travel. The high volume of inbound and outbound travellers, particularly relative to the country's total population, demonstrates the importance of tourism to the economy of New Zealand. Through extensive support from the government and growth across all sectors, we expect to see industry value grow steadily throughout our forecast period.
Key forecasts and developments include:
- BMI is forecasting only minor growth in the number of new hotels over our forecast period, as arrivals figures and occupancy rates are not yet at the point of justifying further expansion; however, there is scope for expansion of the luxury travel sector.
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