Minister Lebouthillier and Parliamentary Secretary Hébert meet with local business representatives to discuss how the new Federal Tourism Growth Strategy will support economic growth in Gaspésie

News release

New strategy will empower communities and create jobs for the middle class

May 23, 2019 – Cap-d’Espoir, Quebec

Canada’s tourism sector is booming, bringing in record numbers of international visitors in 2017 and 2018. It’s our number one service export and accounts for one in ten jobs. The Government of Canada is committed to building on this momentum by investing in tourism to create middle class jobs, grow Canada’s economy, and bring new opportunities and pride to communities looking for a chance to show the world what they have.

That’s why the Honourable Diane Lebouthillier, Minister of National Revenue and Member of Parliament for Gaspésie–Les Îles-de-la-Madeleine, and Richard Hébert, Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Small Business and Export Promotion, met with the Chambre de commerce du Rocher-Percé today to discuss Creating Middle Class Jobs: a Federal Tourism Growth Strategy.

This strategy will empower communities of all sizes through short- and long-term measures by:

  1. providing $58.5 million in funding through the Canadian Experiences Fund to enhance Canada’s tourism products and experiences;
  2. changing the way we invest in tourism by developing Tourism Investment Groups where all levels of government will collaborate to invest more efficiently while meeting local priorities and identifying ways to raise private investment; and
  3. creating the new Tourism Industry Economic Strategy Table to provide a platform for government and industry leaders to collaborate on overcoming sector challenges.

These three pillars will take a whole-of-government approach to addressing barriers to growth, such as lack of investment coordination and labour shortages.

Minister Lebouthillier and Parliamentary Secretary Hébert also visited the Vieille Usine de L’Anse-à-Beaufils, a popular attraction close to hiking paths where visitors can purchase local artwork and attend concerts in a repurposed fish processing plant. Through the Canadian Experiences Fund, the new Federal Tourism Growth Strategy will prioritize investments in rural and remote communities, supporting projects such as community beautification, onsite experiences development in various locations (e.g. fisheries, wineries, breweries and farms), adventure tourism and more. 


“Our government knows that tourism helps every part of the country by creating good jobs for middle class families. We’ve seen many examples of communities transforming and diversifying their economies through tourism. That’s why we’ve developed this strategy, which will stimulate growth in the tourism sector through new and ongoing investments. We are committed to diversifying and expanding our country’s tourism products and experiences to maximize the sector’s potential year-round from coast to coast to coast.”
– The Honourable Mélanie Joly, Minister of Tourism, Official Languages and La Francophonie

“In Gaspésie, the visitor economy impacts countless small businesses and has become the leading industry and job creator. Our region has so much to share with the world, from year-round outdoor adventure to great seafood and farm-to-table experiences, renowned music festivals, and diverse culture. The Federal Tourism Growth Strategy will expand on our tourism sector’s strengths by providing funding to develop or enhance authentic tourism products and experiences. This will empower communities throughout the region to play to their strengths regardless of location or season.”
– The Honourable Diane Lebouthillier, Minister of National Revenue and Member of Parliament for Gaspésie–Les Îles-de-la-Madeleine

“Increased federal government support for the tourism sector is a major component of the work undertaken to help small and medium-sized businesses, which account for 99% of businesses in this important industry. Tourism businesses in Gaspésie have become leaders in Canada, and our government’s new strategy will certainly help them grow even more.”
– Richard Hébert, Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Small Business and Export Promotion  

Quick facts

  • Tourism represents more than 2% of Canada’s gross domestic product.

  • Tourism supports more than 1.8 million jobs in Canada, with 56% of those being in rural areas.

  • Total tourism revenues in 2018 from domestic and international travellers were $102.1 billion, an increase of 5.2% over 2017.

  • In 2018, Canada welcomed a record 21.1 million international tourists, surpassing the previous year’s record of 20.9 million by 1.2%.

Associated links


Émilie Gagnon
Press Secretary
Office of the Minister of National Revenue

Media Relations
Innovation, Science and Economic Development Canada

Stay connected

Follow @cdntourism on social media for tourism-related news and join the conversation using #cdntourismjobs: TwitterInstagram.

Report a problem or mistake on this page
Please select all that apply:

Thank you for your help!

You will not receive a reply. For enquiries, contact us.

Date modified: