Many promising opportunities in tourism: Richards

Those who recall Canada’s centennial celebrations might be surprised to learn about a big tourism event looming on the horizon: the 150th anniversary of confederation.

Those who recall Canada’s centennial celebrations might be surprised to learn about a big tourism event looming on the horizon: the 150th anniversary of confederation.

This was one of the opportunities discussed at the recent Canadian Council of Tourism Ministers meetings, which took place this week in Charlottetown. In addition to federal, provincial and territorial tourism and culture ministers, and representatives of the Canadian Tourism Commission and the Tourism Industry Association of Canada, Wild Rose MP Blake Richards was on hand as chair of the parliamentary tourism caucus.

He said the gathering generated good discussion about the tourism opportunities related to Canada’s milestone year.

“We’re well into the planning stages for the 150th anniversary in 2017.”

Participants also talked about aboriginal tourism, and how many visitors are interested in the history and culture of Canada’s First Nations peoples.

“We had a very good presentation by the Aboriginal Tourism Marketing Circle, which is a national association that works specifically on promoting aboriginal tourism,” said Richards.

“It’s certainly a good opportunity for growth, no question.”

Another promising aspect of Canada’s tourism industry are American visitors. Richards noted how this component of the sector is growing, as the U.S. economy strengthens.

He added that 2013 was a good year for tourism in Canada, with growth of about three per cent.

“If we continue to grow at that kind of pace then certainly we’ll have a very strong industry.”

Richards said some tourism operators in his constituency and elsewhere in the country have suggested that 2014 has been their best year ever.

“I’m hopeful and optimistic that we’ll see the rate of growth for this year be even higher.”

And with Canada hosting the FIFA Women’s World Cup and the Pan Am Games in 2015, the tourism sector could continue to prosper.

Richards, who has chaired the parliamentary tourism caucus for about three years, said the industry is probably underappreciated by many. It generates about $84 billion in revenue and employs 618,000 people, he pointed out.

“That’s a very significant industry, and it’s one that has impacts on every part of the country.”

hrichards@bprda.wpengine.com

Just Posted

Rough sleepers keep city staff busy even in winter

The cost of removing homeless camps discovered in remote natural areas in… Continue reading

Former prison employee pleads guilty to role in inmate escape

Corrections Canada employee smuggled cash into prison for inmate who later escaped

Gesundheit! Stifling a sneeze can cause injuries in rare cases, experts say

TORONTO — With cases of flu continuing to rise in Canada, there’s… Continue reading

‘Reprehensible’: Trudeau abortion policy raises ire of U.S. right

WASHINGTON — In what’s almost certainly a first in the lengthy history… Continue reading

Replay Red Deer Jan. 14: Watch news highlights in pictures

Stories mentioned: Red Deer RCMP seize large quantity of cocaine: Read more… Continue reading

Beer Canada calls on feds to axe increasing beer tax as consumption trends down

OTTAWA — A trade association for Canada’s beer industry wants the federal… Continue reading

Central Albertans recall Hawaii’s false missile alert

Former Red Deer councillor Paul Harris was hanging out at the Ka’anapali… Continue reading

This robotic maid takes us one step closer to ‘The Jetsons’

Imagine this: You’re rushing to get ready for work — juggling emails,… Continue reading

Milan line offers canine couture for pampered pooches

Milan has long been the world’s ready-to-wear fashion leader. Now, dogs are… Continue reading

Kim Kardashian West and husband Kanye welcome baby girl

NEW YORK — It’s a girl for Kim Kardashian West and her… Continue reading

Advocate poll takers oppose plastic bag ban

Red Deer Advocate readers like their plastic bags. In an Advocate poll,… Continue reading

Photo: Chilly work in Veterans’ Park

What a chilly job but somebody has to do it.… Continue reading

Boy, 15, one of three hit in Vancouver shooting

Police believe a man in his 20s was the target of the shooting

Most Read


Five-day delivery plus unlimited digital access for $185 for 260 issues (must live in delivery area to qualify) Unlimited Digital Access 99 cents for the first four weeks and then only $15 per month Five-day delivery plus unlimited digital access for $15 a month