Tourism big earner

Central Otago Mirror - - NEWS - By DEB­BIE JAMIESON

When Deputy Prime Min­is­ter Bill English caught up with Queen­stown Cham­ber of Com­merce mem­bers last week he used his trade­mark good hu­mour and lo­cal knowl­edge to raise a few laughs in be­tween re­view­ing this year’s bud­get. The Mir­ror has se­lected a few quotes which may be of in­ter­est to lo­cals.

Com­par­ing him­self with new Clutha/South­land MP Todd Bar­clay

‘‘I know I’m a bit old and frumpy com­pared to the new model.’’

Prime Min­is­ter John Key’s im­pend­ing visit to Queen­stown:

‘‘We were sit­ting in the House a few weeks ago and there was pretty in­ten­sive de­bate go­ing on about the bud­get and other things and he turns round and says to me, ‘you know when I’m down for the Win­ter Fes­ti­val, which res­tau­rant should I take Bron­agh to?’ So in case your won­der­ing what Prime Min­is­ters have to wres­tle with, that’s the kind of de­ci­sion he takes very se­ri­ously. I won’t tell you what I said be­cause it is favouritism of course.’’

New Zealand’s rock star econ­omy:

‘‘We don’t like that la­bel at all be­cause it im­plies rapid flashy growth. We pre­fer to think of it as a rock solid econ­omy.’’

Dairy sec­tor v tourism

‘‘You’re get­ting a lot more news about dairy than you’re about tourism. Tourism is a big­ger Deputy Prime Min­is­ter and Min­is­ter of Fi­nance Bill English speaks to Queen­stown Cham­ber of Com­merce mem­bers.

Photo: Deb­bie Jamieson/Fair­fax NZ ex­port in­dus­try and of course it’s grow­ing pretty con­sis­tently now and we could ex­pect it’s go­ing to grow quite con­sis­tently for a while par­tic­u­larly now that the US dol­lar-headed ex­change rate . . . will prob­a­bly go un­der 70 cents in the next few months.

‘‘Peo­ple think dairy is a lot big­ger than it is . . . it’s ac­tu­ally 5.5 per cent of the econ­omy . . . it’s man­age­able . . . Even as a pro­por­tion of ex­ports it’s 20 per cent. Ex­ports are now dom­i­nated by tourism.’’

Hous­ing

‘‘We’re try­ing to make a dif­fer­ence. The ba­sic prob­lem with hous­ing across New Zealand is just that it’s too ex­pen­sive be­cause the land is too ex­pen­sive.

‘‘Peo­ple talk about ur­ban sprawl, want­ing their ur­ban out­look. Shift to Gore. Come to Dip­ton. No one will build you out in Dip­ton west.

‘‘If you want to live in a fast grow­ing world-level city like Auck­land ex­pect peo­ple to come and build next door. That’s likely to hap­pen. It could even hap­pen in Queen­stown. It’s part of the dy­namism of the place.’’

Out­look for Queen­stown

‘‘Cer­tainly the out­look in Queen­stown here with a lower US and Aussie dol­lar, big shifts but strong growth in the tourism mar­ket is re­ally pretty good through to 2020 and we’re cer­tainly keen to see the up­surge in tax re­ceipts that will come with it.’’

New Kawa­rau Falls bridge

‘‘Todd will look af­ter the bridge. All I care about is that we’re al­lowed to bike over it Todd. I don’t care where it is.’’

Later: ‘‘My guess is, with­out be­ing too close to it for the last 12 or 18 months, is, it will prob­a­bly be a trade off.

‘‘If you want to change it, it will prob­a­bly take a long time. So there will be a bit of a choice, if you’re an ad­vo­cate for shift­ing it, be­tween a less sat­is­fac­tory so­lu­tion in the next year or two and a very sat­is­fac­tory one in about 2025.’’ Crosson Clarke Car­nachan Chin Ar­chi­tects de­sign

Hills, in Ar­row­town, win­ner of a hous­ing 2015 South­ern Ar­chi­tec­ture

Award.

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