We might not have got the rugby results that we wanted with the recent Lions tour, but Waitaki MP Jacqui Dean says the visit was still a bonanza for the Otago region in other ways.
"Monthly Ministry of Business Regional Tourism Estimates show that tourism expenditure in Otago, in June, grew by a whopping 15 percent on June 2016.
“In fact Otago clocked up the third biggest spend of any region in the country, behind Auckland and Canterbury, with $206 million.
“This is fantastic news for our region and a huge boost for those in the tourism, hospitality, retail and accommodation sectors, many of whom are small business operators who will have appreciated this extra boost.
“The Lions tour brought lots of UK visitors and rugby supporters to our region to share in what makes Otago special and their spending in reflected in these latest figures.
“The Government continues to do what it can to support regions like Otago with the Tourism Infrastructure Fund, allowing communities to benefit financially from increased visitors numbers at the same time providing funding to construct the amenities that those visitors need.