Saskatchewan Government Relations

Saskatchewan Government Relations

October 28, 2005 16:06 ET

Saskatchewan Government Relations: Premier's Tokyo Luncheon Attracts Leading Japanese Tour Operators

REGINA, SASKATCHEWAN--(CCNMatthews - Oct. 28, 2005) - Premier Lorne Calvert joined the Canadian Ambassador in Tokyo to host a luncheon for Japanese tour operators, with the goal of attracting more Japanese tourists to the province.

In 2004, more than 7,700 Japanese visitors generated $5.6 million in tourism receipts in Saskatchewan - a notable increase over previous years. It is an indication of Saskatchewan's growing appeal as a tourism destination.

The Premier's event, held at the Canadian Ambassador's Official Residence in Tokyo on Oct. 28th, attracted 35 senior officials from Japan's leading tour companies.

"Our wide open spaces, unspoiled environment and cultural diversity appeal to Japanese visitors," Calvert said. "They are savvy travelers who want safe, enjoyable, authentic experiences, and they're finding them here in Saskatchewan. More and more Japanese visitors to Canada are making Saskatchewan part of their itinerary."

The luncheon was an opportunity to promote Saskatchewan's many attractions to the country's major tour companies. It was also a chance to build relationships with senior members of Japan's travel industry - these are the people who organize the tours to Canada. They are constantly seeking fresh destinations, and making sure Saskatchewan is on the itinerary means raising the province's tourism profile at a corporate level.

Tourism is one of the industries Saskatchewan is promoting during the Premier's Asian Mission. Every year, Japan generates an average of 560,300 trips to Canada and over $552 million in tourism receipts. With Japan's economy on the rebound, forecasters expect travel to Canada to grow by five to eight per cent a year for the next several years.

Saskatchewan intends to capture this growing interest. The province's current share of the Japanese market is about 1.4 per cent of trips and one per cent of tourism receipts. But visits to the province are expected to increase in 2006 and beyond, especially after the international interest generated by the province's first-time hosting of Rendez-vous Canada 2005.

"Having the Premier and Canadian Ambassador co-host the Tokyo luncheon for senior Japanese tour company officials added great credibility to our marketing efforts," Tourism Saskatchewan President and CEO Roy Anderson said. "It gave industry representatives a chance to build on the success of Rendez-vous Canada."

Tourism is one of the fastest-growing industries in the province, contributing about $1.4 billion to the provincial economy annually and creating jobs for more than 60,000 people.

Contact Information

  • Tourism Saskatchewan - Regina
    Kristin Linklater
    (306) 787-2927
    www.gov.sk.ca