TWO New Zealand tourism bodies which represent scores of Queenstown businesses are likely to join forces.
The Tourism Industry Association New Zealand (TIA) and the New Zealand Hotel Council (NZHC) plan to merge by April.
NZHC chairman Jennie Langley says the aim is to create a unified leadership for the industry, capable of influencing Government and other decision-makers.
Langley says: “The need to ensure there is a well-connected industry association to deal with decision-makers and to shape the success of the industry has never been greater.”
The proposal has been endorsed by both boards, which are now seeking members’ support.
It will see current members of the NZHC integrated into TIA, with TIA providing a new dedicated hotel sector resource.
Discussions with a range of other tourism industry organisations are also underway, with a view to finding further opportunities to integrate.
NZCH has 130 members throughout New Zealand including international chains, large independents and privately-owned hotels.
They employ 11,000 staff and both total annual revenues of more than $866 million.
TIA chairman Norm Thompson says: “We are confident the integration will be of significant benefit to all members as well as the wider visitor industry.
“The hotel sector is already represented on the TIA board and as part of the change to an integrated organisation, the board will consider a name change for the new association.
“It will be seeking members’ support before any final decision is made.”
Members will retain all current benefits and services.