Press Release – Auckland Airport
Auckland Airport today welcomed the announcement by the Minister of Immigration that Immigration New Zealand has reached a new agreement with China Southern Airlines to streamline the process targeting high-value, frequent travelling Chinese tourists to visit New Zealand.
Charles Spillane, General Manager Corporate Affairs for Auckland Airport, said, “This is great news for New Zealand tourism and trade, and will help to further grow the value of tourism from China, a fast expanding market with massive growth potential, and one that has already become our second largest inbound market.”
Global markets are now increasingly Asia-centric and likely to become more so. A global race is on to capture Chinese visitor growth and benefits from the massive rise in the Asian middle-class that is projected. New Zealand’s visitor industry, because of its remote location and small scale, is disadvantaged in global terms, despite its powerful brand appeal.
“Just today, Auckland Airport announced that China Southern Airlines has selected New Zealand as the location to host its top 250 travel agents from China for its annual agent incentive event in December. China Southern could have chosen anywhere in the world, but will be using their brand new A380 aircraft to fly the agents into Auckland. The potential benefit to the country of having 250 travel opinion leaders advocating New Zealand to their massive networks in China cannot be overstated, and just would not happen without the support of the industry and Government,” added Mr Spillane.
“The world’s third largest airline and the largest in Asia, China Southern is an important airline partner for New Zealand. China Southern’s entry to the New Zealand market has been important in providing a Chinese home airline connection, access to domestic networks and non-stop service to Guangzhou. This has complemented Air New Zealand’s services to Shanghai. These connections are vital for New Zealand’s economic linkages to China”, said Mr Spillane.
“This announcement from Minister Guy and Immigration New Zealand is a key step towards further strengthening our economic connections with China, and we congratulate them on this move.”