Hotels on the agenda for Key

Prime Minister John Key (Thomas Mead / Newshub.)
Prime Minister John Key (Thomas Mead / Newshub.)

John Key wants the number of Chinese tourists visiting New Zealand to triple over the next few years, to more than a million people a year.

And the Government is on a mission to entice foreign companies to build places for them to stay.

Auckland's new five star Hyatt Hotel, under construction, is bankrolled by one of China's richest women -- Chen Lihua of Fu Wah fame.

Foreign investment like that is seen as the saviour to New Zealand's tourism infrastructure crisis -- and it has a secret code-name: Project Palace.

It's a global mission by the Government's Trade and Enterprise agency to lure rich foreigners to invest in hotels.

"It's a win-win situation -- we get more beds and more beds mean more tourists who'll spend money," NZTE chief executive Peter Chrisp said.

Tourism has grown so quickly there aren't enough beds to accommodate visitors -- and the problem will get worse unless something is done.

Over the last year, around 356,000 Chinese tourists came to New Zealand -- that's a year on year increase of 25 percent, with one million Chinese tourists expected every year by 2021.

"You're going to see significant investment and boom in tourist infrastructure, it's a statement of fact," Prime Minister John Key said.

Tripling the number of Chinese tourists to New Zealand is an ambitious goal -- especially when the current infrastructure can't cope with current demand.

If John Key's prediction is correct, expect to see a sea of tower cranes over our cities building places for the influx to stay.

Newshub.

Share to Facebook Share to Twitter Share to Email
Share to Facebook Share to Twitter Share to Viber Share to WhatsApp Share to Email