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Foster encourages tourism development in Fermanagh

Tourism Minister Arlene Foster has encouraged local businesses in Fermanagh to capitalise on the growing opportunities available through the tourism industry in 2012.
Tuesday, 29 November 2011

Arlene Foster was speaking at a Destination Fermanagh Information Day in the Lough Erne Resort, which brought people together to discuss how best to co-ordinate the work of the various public and private interests in the Fermanagh tourism sector.

The Minister said: “Fermanagh has a substantial tourism sector, and a higher percentage of repeat visitors than the Northern Ireland average. Despite a challenging economic climate, we have plenty to be positive about, and we need to build on Fermanagh’s strengths to make full use of the county’s tourism assets.

“By adopting a destination management approach Fermanagh continues to add value as a tourism destination and local businesses can take real pride in what the area has to offer. Working in partnership we can change the way potential tourists view Northern Ireland as a destination, inspire them to visit and help them plan their trip.

“The Draft Programme for Government aims to increase visitor numbers to 3.6million and tourism revenue to £625million by 2012 and I want to see destinations across Northern Ireland fully achieve their potential.”

As part of the Northern Ireland Tourist Board’s industry development programme, delegates were encouraged to “Get Ready for 2012”.

Arlene Foster added: “Over recent years, Northern Ireland has developed a growing international reputation for its ability to stage highly successful events, and events such as these are vitally important, not just in terms of our image but also for the economic benefit which they bring.

“With so many outstanding events, celebrations, commemorations and capital projects coming to completion, this is our time and our place to confidently put Northern Ireland on the global tourism map. This is an opportunity not to be missed and I would encourage everyone to get involved, be inspired and join in the spirit of 2012.”

The Minister concluded by commending Destination Fermanagh for their continued contributions to tourism by adopting a partnership approach towards the creation and implementation of a successful Destination Plan for the area.

During the event Arlene Foster also launched the Lough Erne Product Development Study which, led by Waterways Ireland, identifies strategic plans for future waterways investment.

Notes to editors:

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