I want to talk to you today about Winnipeg’s tourism industry. As you know, Tourism Winnipeg is our city’s official destination marketing organization and we work closely with our partners in the industry to bring events, conventions and visitors to Winnipeg.
And right now, our tourism sector is suffering.
Nationally, according to the Tourism Industry Association of Canada, we’re losing an estimated $6 billion dollars a month across the country. Locally, the sector employs 48,000 people in 4,000 businesses, which have been affected by this situation. Tourism is vital to Winnipeg’s economy.
But we also know companies are adapting. Restaurants and breweries are delivering to your door, while attractions are providing virtual tours. The fact that our industry — the RBC Convention Centre, hotels and attractions — has a positive reputation of working together means we’ll be in a better position on the other side of this pandemic.
We’re meeting with Travel Manitoba, the Manitoba Hotel Association, RBC Convention Centre and others to coordinate a plan for how to recover. Our Tourism Winnipeg team has already started working on submitting Request for Proposals (RFPs) for future convention business to fill the pipeline to restart our industry when it is safe to do so.
Last week, our Market Intelligence team started providing a weekly economic digest - an economic snapshot report to help businesses make informed decisions. You can find them on our COVID-19 toolkit for businesses.
We can still work together, apart. Our city can be underestimated but in times like these, Winnipeggers stay real. They stay authentic to our core values that keep us innovating, creating and building no matter what is put in our way.
When this is over, we look forward to hosting you, your friends, relatives and colleagues back to our world-class attractions, events and culinary scene. We also look forward to helping our business community recover and grow again.