$47.7 million made available as part of Government’s Tourism Recovery Package to support regional events 

As part of the Government’s Tourism Recovery Package, the $47.75 million Regional Events Fund (REF) was made available to the nine International Marketing Alliance (IMA’s) groupings of Regional Tourism Organisations (RTO’s). The Regional Events Fund is part of government’s $400 million Tourism Recovery package.

The REF is designed to stimulate domestic tourism and travel between regions through funding events and activities that will encourage expenditure missed by international tourists due to the border closure.

Research done by Tourism New Zealand shows that one third of domestic travel is primarily driven by Kiwis looking to participate in events, such as festivals and concerts. Local accommodation, hospitality, retail and the wider tourism sector benefits from such events as it drives visitors to the region and stimulate the local economy.

The Fund has been split across the (IMA) groupings based on their share of international visitor spending prior to COVID-19 as well as meeting the REF criteria and the development of an investment plan setting out how the funding would be spent.

The Western North Island marketing alliance consists of Manawatū, Whanganui and Taranaki and together will receive $1million over the four-year duration of the fund. Although the IMA has worked together as a unified unit, supporting each other’s objectives and collaborating where possible to drive visitation to the area, the regions are physically distant from each other with different event profiles. The regions have worked together to determine the best way to allocate the $1 million.

Funding focussed towards:

Manawatū will focus building capability and capacity to deliver on our extisting stratgies focusing on conference and business events and the secondary school sports sector. Our region will also focus on events that will build on our region’s sectors of strengths and will develop one key iconic event for Manawatū.
Taranaki will primarily focus on event development, supercharging already successful events and providing support for events heavily affected by COVID-19.
Whanganui will focus on events that align with their strategic goals of economic impact and pomoting Wanganui as a vibrant progessive location.

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