TNZ confident of visitor economy, operators less certain

TNZ confident of visitor economy, operators less certain

While Tourism New Zealand is confident there will be a viable visitor economy for the country, the results of its pre Budget survey make grim reading.

Operators are forecasting layoffs to 52% of their work force, in the regions 49% lay-offs.  All businesses surveyed report making hard decisions to keep their business alive – 37% have reduced staff, 31% are mothballing assets and operations, 9% have sold assets.  

Nearly 80% of businesses are drastically changing their operations with only a small proportion of businesses (12%) staying in business as is; 3% do not believe they will be able to reopen.

Businesses sharply reducing capacity numbered 26%, 27% are placing their business into hibernation, 18% are at high risk of ceasing operation, 1% are no longer operating; 90% have accessed government assistance.

Three quarters of the 1619 respondents said they had changed their operations to adapt and 88% of them think they can pivot their product to the domestic market.  

Around 80% of businesses say they will return to work as demand returns, 64% will gradually return to levels of operation to meet demand, 16% plan to quickly restart at original operation levels and 26% will re-start with a new business model.

Responses were received across a range of industry sizes with 88% identifying as a sole trader or small business.

The information collected will form an input into the Tourism Taskforce that was announced in last week’s budget.

‘It formed a key part of Tourism New Zealand’s advice to the Government in the lead up to the Budget,’ says TNZ CEO, Stephen England-Hall.

In planning future operating capacity, operators are looking to decreased domestic alert levels, a reopened border, commencement of the high season, and the resumption of large events.

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