A new partnership agreement between the Department of Conservation (DOC) and the Tourism Industry Association New Zealand (TIA) was officially signed today, benefiting tourism and conservation in New Zealand.
DOC Director-General Lou Sanson (left) and TIA Chief Executive Chris Roberts at the signing
“This agreement builds on a long history of DOC and TIA working closely together,” says DOC Director-General, Lou Sanson.
“It is a strong symbol of our commitment to a new way of working with iwi, businesses and communities to develop commercial opportunities that promote and enhance conservation.”
TIA Chief Executive Chris Roberts says the partnership between DOC and the tourism industry is fundamental to the growth of the visitor economy.
“People travel here from all over the world to enjoy our spectacular landscapes and natural scenery. DOC manages a third of New Zealand’s total land area and hundreds of tourism operators rely on access to public conservation areas in order to operate their businesses,” Mr Roberts says.
“As the tourism industry pursues its Tourism 2025 goal of almost doubling total tourism revenue to $41 billion, we want to work closely with DOC to manage that growth to ensure our environment is protected and the visitor experience is enhanced.”
The agreement promotes six principles for the DOC/TIA partnership:
- Promote the value of commercially delivered recreation to deliver quality, safe experiences for a wide range of people in our natural places
- Actively encourage commercial activities and proposals that grow conservation
- Build strong, respectful working relationships between DOC and the tourism industry
- Communicate well to understand each other’s challenges, constraints and opportunities
- Promote and support business practices that exemplify kaitiakitanga (guardianship)
- Pursue national consistency and efficiency in DOC’s commercial processes and decision-making
A key action within the new partnership agreement is Project Groundswell which aims for nationally consistent and effective DOC commercial processes and decision making, and support for business practices that exemplify kaitiakitanga.
Mr Roberts describes the partnership as a win-win for tourism and conservation. TIA looks forward to working with DOC to ensure tourism is sustainable and well supported.