Hotel Online
News for the Hospitality Executive


An Open Letter to the Industry on Funding for the Canadian Tourism Commission
Anthony P. Pollard, President, Hotel Association of Canada

Dear Valued Member,

Canada’s tourism industry is in crisis; plain and simple.

Funding for the Canadian Tourism Commission (CTC), Canada’s national marketing agency, has declined from $100 million in 2001 to $72 million in 2012 and $58.5 million in 2013. The cuts come when Canada faces increasing competition from international competitors including the new $200 million Brand United States Program - $20 million of which is being spent in Canada.

What is the result? 10 years ago 35 percent of tourism revenue in Canada came from the international market; today it is down to only 20 percent. Due to lack of funding, the CTC has been forced to exit many markets including Italy, the Netherlands, Spain, Switzerland and major cuts in Japan and the United States.

Quite simply Canada is not keeping up globally.
Tourism Marketing Organization Approximate Funding
Tourism India $248 million
Tourism Ireland $211 million
Mexico Tourism Board $152.million
Tourism Australia $147 million
Tourism Malaysia $128 million
Las Vegas Convention & Visitors Authority $119 million
South Africa Tourism $118 million
Atout France $111 million
Korea Tourism Organization $  94 million
Tourism New Zealand $  88 million
Brazil Ministry of Tourism $  83 million
The Bahamas Ministry of Tourism $  81 million
Switzerland Tourism $  80 million
Hawaii Tourism Authority $  73 million
Canadian Tourism Commission $  72 million
California Travel & Tourism Commission $  51 million
Visit Britain $  48 million

Dependence on the domestic market is a serious concern with limited growth potential available from our comparatively small population base. Canada’s international tourism performance with respect to international arrivals has not kept pace with its competitors, yet tourism globally is expected to grow. New competition from emerging markets and increasingly well-resourced competitors, has contributed to Canada’s decline as a destination from 7th place in 2002 to 15th place in 2010.

The Government of Canada has recognized the critical importance of tourism, domestically and internationally. Prime Minister Stephen Harper has said; “It is our hope that the Federal Tourism Strategy [announced in 2011] will help inspire the world to explore Canada while also making it easier to travel to our beautiful country” .The Government of Canada in the Federal Tourism Strategy has itself set a target of $100 billion in revenue by 2015. This builds on the Government of Canada Economic Action Plan wherein “tourism is identified as a strategic priority.”

The Honourable Maxime Bernier, Minister of State for Tourism, has invited the Hotel Association of Canada (HAC) and the Tourism Industry Association of Canada (TIAC) to present industry options for long term sustainable funding for the CTC. In April, I along with HAC Chair, Hank Stackhouse and TIAC President David Goldstein met with the CTC Board to review possible funding options including a redirection of the GST on aviation charges to the CTC, a redirection of any surplus from Air Travel Security Charges to the CTC or a visitor entry fee.

A sustainable and competitive CTC would move us to a position of strength over the next five years. It would allow us to take full advantage of immediate emerging markets and it would counter the Brand USA attack on Canada’s domestic market. It would generate 5.7 million additional visitors, create $8.2 billion in new export revenues, 64,000 additional jobs and establish tourism as a true export industry.

Now consider the alternative of not securing sustainable funding. Our marketing reach would be reduced to its lowest levels. Partnership leveraged funds would be severely eroded. The CTC would have to further abandon key markets.

Canada cannot squander an opportunity to move to a position of strength. We cannot miss the open door of emerging markets and risk continued decline in our competitive positioning.

The HAC is asking each and everyone of you to contact your MP and advocate for the importance of new sustained funding for the CTC. The status quo is not an option.


Anthony P. Pollard

About the Hotel Association of Canada
The Hotel Association of Canada is the national voice and resource for the Hotel and Lodging Industry in Canada. For nearly 100 years, it has worked to enhance the prosperity of the Canadian Hotel and Lodging Industry through strong member engagements, effective government advocacy, and the provision of value added programs and services. The Hotel Association represents more than 8,400 hotels, motels and resorts that encompass the $16 billion Canadian hotel industry which employs 284,000 people across Canada.


Anthony Pollard
Hotel Association of Canada
Tel:  (613) 237-7149
Cell: (613) 850-1685


Receive Your Hospitality Industry Headlines via Email for Free! Subscribe Here  

 To Learn More About Your News Being Published on Hotel-Online Inquire Here

Also See: The Hotel Association of Canada (HAC) Applauds Canada's New Foreign Worker Rules; New Regulations Improve Response Time for Requests within the Temporary Foreign Worker Program / April 2012

The Hotel Association of Canada (HAC) and the Alberta Hotel & Lodging Association (AHLA) Call on their Government to Address Labor Shortages; Supporting Changes to the Temporary Foreign Worker Program / April 2012

Hank Stackhouse Assumes Role as New Chair for Hotel Association of Canada / March 2012

Hotel Association of Canada Hall of Fame Awards of Excellence Presented in Categories of Humanitarian, Human Resources and Energy & Environment / March 2012

Business Travel is Picking Up While Leisure Travel is Expected to Remain Static According to the 2012 Hotel Association of Canada's Canadian Travel Intentions Survey / March 2012

Hotel Association of Canada Commitmed to Expanding Tourism from China; Creates Hospitality for Chinese Guests Update / February 2012

In its Pre-Budget Report, The Canadian House of Commons Finance Committee Embraces Recommendations from the Hotel Association of Canada for Stable Long Term Tourism Funding and an Aviation Review / December 2011

Hotel Association of Canada Hall of Fame Awards Submission Deadline Extended to December 12, 2011 / November 2011

Canadian Federal Government Launches Inaugural Federal Tourism Strategy / October 2011

Hotel Association of Canada Seeks Entries for their 2011 Hall of Fame Awards for Excellence / September 2011

Hotel Association of Canada and MPI Foundation Launch Green Key Meetings, an Assessment Tool to Provide Meeting Planners with a Hotel's Level of Commitment to Environmental Issues / April 2011

Hotel Association of Canada Hall of Fame Awards Presented to Steve Gupta for Humanitarianism, Carol Lumb for Human Resources and the Parkside Victoria Resort for the Energy & Environment Category / March 2011

2011 Canadian Travel Intentions Survey Indicates Canadians Drive to the States For Less Expensive Airline Tickets / February 2011

2010 Canadian Travel Intentions Survey Indicates Business Travel Will Pick Up and Leisure Travel Will Decline Slightly / February 2010

Hotel Association of Canada Recognizes Recipients of Hall of Fame Awards / February 2010

To search Hotel Online data base of News and Trends Go to Hotel.OnlineSearch

Home | Welcome| Hospitality News |
Industry Resources

Please contact Hotel.Online with your comments and suggestions.