Posted on Wednesday 26 June 2013 by Ulster Business
Susie McCullough and Alan Clarke from the Northern Ireland Tourist Board and James McGinn, President Northern Ireland Hotels Federation, announce the impact of last year's ni2012 Our Time Our Place campaign on the tourism industry.
NITB Chief Executive Alan Clarke said that ni2012 had surpassed all of its pre-determined objectives and targets, and raised Northern Ireland to a new level in terms of global perception, profile, economic impact and self-belief.
The programme of celebrations, commemorations, major events and new attractions brought over a million visitors and significantly raised global awareness, the CEO said.
Taking into account the total expenditure of event spectators, non-spectators and event organisers, ni2012 generated £17.8m additional to the Northern Ireland economy, said NITB. It estimated that, in total, ni2012 created a wider tourism impact of £42.2m, resulting in return on investment of £1:£4.78. The overall impact to NI business amounted to £67.2m.
Alan Clarke added: "The sustained exposure generated by the campaign has moved us to a new level domestically and internationally, and one of NITB's key priorities is to now build on the legacy of ni2012. In this respect, we will be doing all we can to capitalise on opportunities to further increase our profile on the world stage in 2013 and beyond, as evidenced by the hugely successful G8 Summit last week.
"The big lesson of ni2012 is that we are world-class. We can do MTV, we can do major golf tournaments, we can open world-class attractions and we can run spectacular events. And in delivering this we can all work together with pride so it is right that we take a moment to celebrate the success."
Commenting on the impact of ni2012, Tourism Minister Arlene Foster said: "2012 was anticipated as a tipping point and potential game changer for the Northern Ireland tourism industry and, as the Minister for Tourism, I have been very encouraged by the very positive outcomes of the year.
"It is clear that ni2012 Our Time Our Place sent out a strong and vibrant message to the world that tourism has come of age here, that there is a new and very attractive Northern Ireland on offer, and that we are confidently moving on. Through the investment we have made, the world-class standards we have applied and the global coverage we have achieved, Northern Ireland has been firmly established on the international tourism map. At the same time a new energy, enthusiasm and pride in 'our place' has been built and a new-found belief in what we are capable of as a tourism destination which I believe bodes very well for the future."
Tourism Ireland estimated that its promotions for ni2012 reached over 100 million people during the course of 2012.