Federal, provincial, and territorial tourism ministers have agreed to strengthen their collaboration in developing policies that will help Canada’s tourism sector recover from the pandemic.
The need was highlighted at the annual Canadian Council of Tourism Ministers meeting (CCTM) on Thursday (Jan. 20), a forum that was co-chaired by Randy Boissonnault, Minister of Tourism and Associate Minister of Finance, and Caroline Proulx, Minister of Tourism of Quebec.
Throughout the meeting, the ministers discussed the current context and the main challenges affecting the recovery of the tourism sector, both in the short and long term, including, uncertainty surrounding the trajectory of the pandemic, the level of tourism demand, workforce challenges, and destination development, according to a summary released yesterday.
Ministers agreed to establish a collaborative work plan consisting of three key elements in short order:
- Collaborating to address the challenges posed by workforce shortages;
- Addressing access to destinations; and
- Promoting economic growth for the entire tourism sector, specifically sustainable tourism, events, and Indigenous experiences.
Ministers noted the importance of working with partners and stakeholders in their respective jurisdictions with the goal of restoring travellers' confidence in Canada.
They said they will review progress on this plan throughout 2022.
"We know the Canadian tourism sector continues to be one of the most affected by the COVID-19 pandemic and the Canadian economy will not fully recover until tourism has too. I want to assure all Canadians in the sector that we will continue to support businesses through the current challenges,” Minister Boissonnault said in a statement. “Tourism is everybody's business, a key economic driver in communities across the country.”