News Tourism & Hospitality

Labour’s Inaction Leaves Tourism 65,000 Short


National is launching a campaign ‘Where are our
workers this summer?”
to highlight the critical
shortage of workers in tourism and hospitality which risks
undermining the experience of visitors and leave struggling
businesses poorer, National’s Tourism spokesperson Todd
McClay says.

“Around the country this summer, hotel
rooms won’t be cleaned, restaurant tables will be empty,
and people will be waiting for hours because businesses
don’t have the staff they need.

“For the tourism
and hospitality industry to provide the high-quality
services that New Zealand is known for, they need to have
the staff.

“Without them, the sector will attract
less spending – meaning businesses that have struggled
through Covid will not be able to trade their way out of
trouble.

“For example, hospitality and restaurants
need at least 50,000 staff, tour bus companies need 1,000
more drivers, and hotels need more than 2,500 extra
workers.”

Information from the Hotel, Hospitality,
Bus and Coach and Restaurant Associations and the Tourism
Satellite Account have shown that their businesses are short
65,000 workers this summer, with the number expected to
grow.

Auckland Airport says it is 1600 workers short
and is warning of a ‘travel crunch’ this
summer.

“New Zealand is hosting the Women’s FIFA
World Cup next year, an event which could be a massive
success. But if businesses can’t recover their debts over
summer, we may not have a fully operational tourism
industry.

“National would have listened to the
sector when they first raised concerns and freed up
immigration settings earlier to meet the predicted labour
shortages.

“Labour also needs to focus on getting
people into work not onto welfare to help provide the
workers the sector desperately needs.

“Tourism and
hospitality operators have been signalling this crisis for
12 months now. For many it is now too late to save this
summer.

“The sector needs to send a loud and clear
message to the Government that it needs to take action now
to ensure tourists and tourism operators are not caught
short again next summer.”

The petition can be found
here: https://www.national.org.nz/support_hospitality_and_tourism

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