Published in: Kokiri Issue 8 - Paenga Whāwhā - Haratua 2008
A new manual showcasing 100 Māori tourism businesses will set a quality benchmark for the future of Māori tourism, says Tourism Minister Damien O’Connor. The Minister was speaking at the launch of the New Zealand Māori Tourism Trade Manual 2008-2009, which showcases Māori businesses with proven track records in delivering quality and authentic products.
Damien O’Connor says Māori tourism priorities and Māori cultural values are included throughout the New Zealand Tourism Strategy 2015. “The Strategy is underpinned by two key values – kaitiakitanga (guardianship) and manaakitanga (hospitality).
“Welcoming our visitors with mutual respect and sharing our knowledge, stories and beliefs in the spirit of kaitiakitanga (guardianship) and manaakitanga (hospitality) will ensure the experience offered by local Māori businesses is world class and will benefit our visitors and our communities,” says Damien O’Connor.
Associate Tourism Minister Nanaia Mahuta says the new Māori Tourism Trade Manual is a milestone and establishes the unique point of difference Māori contribute to Aotearoa-New Zealand tourism. “This manual is an entrée to high-quality Māori tourism products and experiences that profile the special character of culture and values unique to Māori people,” says Nanaia Mahuta.
A recent “sector profile” on Māori tourism released by the Ministry of Tourism estimates that around one in five (455,000) of all adult international tourists to New Zealand visited a Māori cultural tourism experience in 2006.
“When statistics suggest visitor numbers at that level, it tells us that Māori tourism continues to grow an added value to the New Zealand tourism industry,” says Nanaia Mahuta. “The future of Māori tourism looks bright and I look forward to many more operators and visitors benefiting from this Māori tourism trade manual,” she says.