Hoteliers look forward to working closely with Minister Paschal Donohoe, TD
  Tourism’s success has been supported by targeted, pro-tourism Government measures
  IHF believes tourism has the potential to create over 40,000 more jobs by 2020
  Tourism must remain at the heart of Government economic policy
Friday, 11th July 2014: The Irish Hotels Federation (IHF) today welcomes the appointment of Paschal Donohoe, TD, as Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport. 
IHF President, Stephen McNally says: “We look forward to working with Minister Donohoe to ensure tourism achieves a sustained recovery, building on the significant progress made since 2011 – during which time the industry has created over 23,000 new jobs. We also welcome the Government’s renewed acknowledgement today of the critical role tourism has to play in the country’s economic recovery.”
“Tourism’s success over the last three years has been supported by a range of targeted, pro-tourism Government measures that have had an enormously positive impact on the industry,” says Mr McNally. “More needs to be done, however, and we believe the sector has the potential to create over 40,000 more jobs by the end of the decade. This will only be achieved if tourism remains to the fore of Government decision making and continues to be supported by longterm policies focused on growth and employment in the industry.”
Mr McNally notes that, with appropriate supports, Irish tourism is well-positioned to achieve an ambitious target of 10 million overseas visitors per annum by 2020 – up from the seven million overseas visitors achieved in 2013. This would generate an additional €540 million in annual tax revenue for the exchequer.
Mr McNally thanked outgoing tourism Minister Leo Varadkar for his commitment to the industry during his tenure as Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport. He states: “Since he came to office, Minister Varadkar has been pivotal in enabling tourism to stabilise and return to growth. During that time, tourism has benefitted from measures such as the reduced 9% VAT rate, the Visa waiver scheme and the reduction of the Air Travel Tax to zero – all of which have been of significant assistance to the industry.”
Tourism’s economic contribution
The IHF states the tourism industry as a whole now supports almost 200,000 jobs - equivalent to 11% of total employment in the country, some 54,000 of which are in the hotels sector. Total revenue generated across all tourism-related businesses annually stands at over €5.7 billion and accounts for 4% GNP.
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