MIL-OSI Canada: Minister Vandal announces federal funding to enhance Alberta’s Indigenous tourism economy

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Source: Government of Canada News

PrairiesCan funding of $4 million will bolster the ability of Indigenous Tourism Alberta to draw more visitors to authentic Indigenous experiences, events and attractions across the province

March 13, 2024 – Calgary, Alberta – PrairiesCan

The Government of Canada is investing in the growth of tourism to support economic reconciliation and enable Indigenous communities on the Prairies to share their stories, traditions, and landscapes with visitors from across Canada and around the world. In Alberta, authentic Indigenous experiences and offerings are a key driver of the region’s tourism economy and support quality jobs in big cities and small towns alike.

Today the Honourable Dan Vandal, Minister for PrairiesCan, announced $4 million in federal funding for Indigenous Tourism Alberta to strengthen the ability of small- and medium-sized Indigenous tourism businesses to develop and market their products and offerings to a global audience.

As an Indigenous-led, not-for-profit industry association, Indigenous Tourism Alberta is well positioned to grow Indigenous tourism capacity and promote Alberta’s authentic Indigenous experiences.

Today’s investment will enable the organization to carry out several key activities, including:

  • Delivering a series of tourism product development workshops for Indigenous tourism operators in northern and southern Alberta.
  • Launching digital and in-person marketing campaigns targeting potential visitors from key markets such as Japan, Germany, the United States, France, and the United Kingdom.
  • Establishing commercial relationships with travel wholesalers and distributors in key international markets to increase awareness of Alberta’s Indigenous tourism experiences and introduce authentic Indigenous tourism packages to travel retailers.
  • Strengthening networking and engagement among member organizations and the travel industry to identify and assess consumer trends and sales opportunities.

The collaborative nature of this initiative links to principles of the federal government’s new Framework to Build a Green Prairie Economy which include advancing economic reconciliation. Over the next four years, this investment is expected to support the growth of about 165 small- and medium-sized Indigenous tourism businesses, assist in the creation and expansion of at least 10 new businesses, and support approximately 100 jobs.

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