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North American and Asian visitors drive surge in tourist spending
Embargoed until 10:45am  –  28 October 2014

Tourism Satellite Account: 2014  –  Media Release

Increasing numbers of visitors from North America and Asia contributed to a $1.1 billion increase in tourist spending in the past year, Statistics New Zealand said today.

Total tourism expenditure increased 5.0 percent ($1,128 million) to $23.8 billion in the year ended March 2014, according to the Tourism Satellite Account: 2014.

Spending by international tourists in New Zealand increased 7.4 percent ($709 million) in the past year, following a 1.8 percent decrease in the previous year. The number of short-term international visitors increased 5.4 percent over the same period.

“A significant rise in visitor numbers from the United States and continued growth in the number of Chinese tourists contributed to the largest increase in spending by international tourists since 2002,” national accounts manager Gary Dunnet said.

Key results for the year ended March 2014 are:

  • International tourism expenditure contributed $10.3 billion (15.3 percent) to New Zealand’s total exports.
  • Domestic tourism expenditure increased 3.2 percent ($419 million) to $13.4 billion.
  • Tourism generated a direct contribution to GDP of $8.3 billion, or 4.0 percent of GDP.
  • The indirect value added of industries supporting tourism generated an additional $6.5 billion for tourism, or 3.1 percent of GDP.
  • The tourism industry directly employed 94,100 full-time equivalents (FTEs), or 4.7 percent of total employment in New Zealand.
  • Tourists generated $1.8 billion in GST revenue.

Tourism Satellite Account: 2014 incorporates revisions made to the International Visitor Survey expenditure and international student expenditure (consistent with the definition of a tourist). These have resulted in changes to the value of international tourism expenditure in the Tourism Satellite Account back to 1999. Revisions have also been made to domestic tourism expenditure. Changes to tourism expenditure have also led to revisions in tourism employment back to 2001.

Read Tourism Satellite Account: 2014 online, or order a hard copy from our Information Centre: email


For media enquiries contact: Bernie Hanratty, Wellington 04 931 4600,
Authorised by Liz MacPherson, Government Statistician, 28 October 2014

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