New Zealand – recovering from a recent terror attack in Christchurch that saw 50 people killed – is in grief. But even in the face of atrocity, Tourism NZ manages to present itself with grace and integrity.
According to Anna Fennessy, global manager, business events, Tourism NZ, the body made a decision to pause all advertising, global campaign activity, and trade and media visits to New Zealand for a short period of two weeks following the attack.
“We felt it was right to give New Zealanders time and space before we promoted our home again. We didn’t take these decisions lightly,” said Fennessy. “We did it because we thought it was the right thing to do. It simply didn’t feel right or sensitive to be promoting the country offshore or to bring large groups of trade and media here right now. We are currently working with each of our markets to determine the best way to resume this activity.”
She added that it was too early to tell if the incident would have an effect on international business events in Christchurch or the rest of the country. “Overseas clients can support New Zealand by continuing to share their kind words of support and thoughts with those affected,” she said.
The focus for the tourism board at the moment is to make sure the affected parties are supported. “The event was unprecedented and New Zealand has responded to the event by strongly condemning the actions of those responsible for the attack and supporting those affected. We also acknowledge the people of New Zealand, in particular the Christchurch community for their amazing support of those affected,” said Fennessy.
“Tourism NZ will now work closely with Christchurch and the wider industry to ensure that our country’s values, welcome, and proven ability to hold world class business events are showcased.”