Canadian tourism ministers continue to engage to collaboratively support the sector

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Federal, provincial and territorial ministers responsible for tourism met in person this week in Vancouver, BC for the annual Canadian Council of Tourism Ministers (CCTM) meeting. The Honourable Randy Boissonnault, Minister of Tourism and Associate Minister of Finance, and the Honourable Lisa Beare, British Columbia Minister of Tourism, Arts, Culture and Sport, co-chaired the meeting and recognized the traditional territory of the Musqueam, Squamish, and Tsleil-Waututh First Nations. As tourism recovers across Canada, there is keen interest to find ways to collaboratively support the sector.

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In the lead up to this meeting, the federal government, provinces and territories studied through working groups key issues facing the tourism sector as it recovers from the pandemic. These include the tourism workforce, destination access, and economic growth. The findings from these working groups were presented to tourism ministers today, to highlight the current state of play in the sector, as well as sharing data and best practices. The federal government received this input as part of its engagement with provinces and territories on a new Federal Tourism Growth Strategy. All governments agreed to explore opportunities for future collaboration.

Ministers noted some priority areas for the collaborative workplan for 2023. On the theme of workforce, they indicated an interest in monitoring the impacts of the labour shortage on tourism sub-sectors and to explore ways to promote the sector. On destination access, more extensive engagement will be conducted to raise tourism-specific concerns with key transportation stakeholders. On economic growth, the priority will be to explore ways to sustainably expand tourism offerings by addressing seasonal and geographic dispersion and attracting key audience segments.

In a separate meeting held prior to the official CCTM agenda, British Columbia Indigenous tourism organizations shared their approaches and priorities with ministers, with a particular focus on sustainability, growth, and experience development. Ministers noted their commitment to strengthening engagement and collaboration with Indigenous tourism organizations and communities going forward.

The working groups will also commit to ensuring an Indigenous lens is applied to all levels of their work. The working groups will continue to engage with the federal, provincial and territorial orders of government, stakeholders, Indigenous partners, and tourism organizations to share information and pursue initiatives. Ministers will review progress on this workplan throughout 2023.

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