CTC News

How CTC will help bring the new federal tourism strategy to life.

Signature Experiences Collection forms just part of a new ‘whole-of-government approach’ that will better integrate tourism.

06 October 2011
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The Honourable Maxime Bernier, Minister of State (Small Business and Tourism), announced a new integrated approach to tourism Oct. 6 under the much-anticipated federal tourism strategy. At its heart for the Canadian Tourism Commission (CTC) is the Signature Experiences Collection®.

The new federal tourism strategy will prove invaluable in smoothing the way for collaboration and communication between federal departments and agencies that touch upon tourism. Its “whole-of-government approach” will mean that tourism plays a part in policy and program development and will focus future tourism investments on priority areas. 

The Signature Experiences Collection®, CTC’s newly formed pool of top-notch tourism experiences from around Canada, closed its first round of applications in August after launching this summer with 48 inaugural members. These ambassadors of Canada’s tourism brand will give an extra edge to Canada’s competitiveness in the highly-prized global tourism marketplace.

CTC has hit the ground running with two other commitments outlined in the strategy:

  • Realigning the business model: CTC fully implemented the strategic shift to its business in 2011.
  • Modernizing the CTC Board: The 2010 federal budget announced the elimination of 14 governor-in-council positions on the CTC Board, which has already been carried out. The final legal implementation of the modernizing process should occur in late 2011.

There is a work ahead, too, for the future:

  • Promote Atlantic Canada as a leisure destination: The CTC is just a signing-on-the-dotted line away from a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) for a new partnership with the Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency.
     
  • Brand Canada as a premier travel destination for culinary excellence: Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada (AAFC) is currently looking at ways to enhance the profile of Canadian cuisine internationally. CTC has already taken part and partnered with AAFC through promotions in South Korea and will investigate with the agency for other opportunities to show off this country’s fine food and bolster Canada’s tourism strategy.
     
  • Increase the supply and marketing of Aboriginal cultural tourism experiences: Aboriginal Affairs and Northern Development Canada (AANDC) is looking to tie in with CTC’s Signature Experiences Collection® and encourage leading Aboriginal businesses to apply.
     
  • Extend the “Welcome to Canada” program: CTC teamed up with the Canada Border Services Agency and other provincial partners to dress up the arrival halls at the airports in Toronto, ON, Ottawa, ON, Edmonton, AB, and Vancouver, BC, for the 2010 Winter Games. The plan on the table is to keep non-Games-specific images in all airports for three more years, except in Vancouver, which initially had Olympic-themed material, so it needs a refresh.
     
  • Promote tourism products at Visa application centres: Tourism promotion at these centres run by Citizenship and Immigration Canada should begin by spring 2012, leading to a global rollout in 2013.
     
  • Coordinate tourism research: This is an existing CTC strong point. The Commission will contribute research products to the Industry Canada-led commitment.

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