Speaking at the Northern Ireland Hotels Federation (NIHF) annual conference, Hospitality Exchange 2022, Economy Minister Gordon Lyons said that the local tourism sector was continuing to perform well.
The two day conference will be attended by almost 600 delegates and carries themes pertaining to the hotel, hospitality, and wider tourism industry.
Minister Lyons said:
“The tourism industry is undoubtedly gearing up for a return to growth and success in the years ahead and there is a good deal of optimism and ambition in the sector. I am encouraged that most of the statistics I’ve seen recently point to a positive trading performance so far this year. Closer to home markets are performing well and our international markets are also starting to recover. I think it is fair to say that so far, we have recovered much quicker than we could have ever imagined back in the summer of 2020.
“I am very conscious, however, of wider economic uncertainties including the cost of living, the cost of doing business and the general financial mood so I know that value for money will remain extremely important in the months ahead. To help with these new economic challenges, my Department and I recently announced an £11.5m funding package to further support the tourism industry to carry out additional marketing and promotional activity over the shoulder and low season in the GB, Republic of Ireland and European markets. Further support will also be provided to Tourism NI’s successful Kick Start programme as well as to business events.”
The Minister added:
“Work has recommenced on a tourism strategy that will lead the tourism industry through the next decade ensuring that Northern Ireland stands out in all our key markets and underpinning my Department’s ‘10X’ strategy. The new tourism strategy will set a vision and a direction of travel for the local tourism industry to meet the challenges of becoming more sustainable, inclusive and innovative over the next decade.”
Notes to editors:
1. Photo caption: Pictured at the Northern Ireland Hotels Federation annual conference, Hospitality Exchange 2022 are (L to R): Stephen Meldrum, NIHF President, Janice Gault NIHF CEO, Eddie McKeever, NIHF Vice President and Economy Minister Gordon Lyons.
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