FREDERICTON (GNB) – The provincial government today released its economic growth plan for tourism.

Tourism is a major component of the government’s economic vision. The Economic Growth Plan released in September focuses on strengthening five pillars of the economy: people, innovation, infrastructure, capital and agility. It also includes a new approach to economic development through a so-called “opportunities model”. In this model, specific ideas with potential for high returns on investment were chosen for special focus.

“I am pleased that tourism has been identified as one of the first 12 selected opportunities for growth being pursued as part of your government’s Economic Growth Plan,” said Tourism, Heritage and Culture Minister John Ames. “New Brunswick is an exceptional destination for our visitors; it is a treasure trove for tourism. National and international visitors come here to immerse themselves in our natural landscapes, our amazing people, culture and experiences.”

A successful tourism industry requires attractions, service providers and promotion, said Ames. Investments in tourism infrastructure are expected to help boost the number of tourists and their satisfaction rates. The government plans to take advantage of emerging tourism opportunities, such as those related to:

  • Canada 150 celebrations;
  • the maple syrup industry;
  • trail maintenance and development; and
  • investing in tourism infrastructure and signage.

The government will also increase efforts to develop New Brunswick as an all-season destination.

The tourism industry is an important job creator, employing 42,100 people in New Brunswick as of August 2015, which was an increase of 3,200 over the previous year. It contributes $522 million annually to the provincial GDP.

In 2015, for every public dollar spent on marketing the province, there was a return of $3.19 to help fund important social programs.

The provincial government sees an opportunity to do more.

“We will continue to promote New Brunswick as a world-class travel destination because we recognize how important tourism is to our economy and our communities,” said Ames.

Later in 2017, the government will launch the province’s first new comprehensive tourism strategy since the 1990s.

“As a government, we are ready to roll up our sleeves and work hard with partners to get results and grow jobs in tourism all across New Brunswick,” Ames said.