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A visitor kisses the Blarney Stone Brian Rosner vis Flickr
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Good news for the tourism industry with "recovery on the way"

Growth is expected in the second quarter of the year, bringing Irish tourism out of a “harrowing” period.

THERE’S SOME GOOD news today for the tourism industry, with the new chairman of the Irish Tourist Industry Confederation predicting that things are “on the turn”.

John Healy says the industry is likely to see its first growth here since 2008 in the second quarter of the year. He has described the period since 2008 as “harrowing”, and says the industry has “endured a reversal of almost one third in visitor numbers and revenue since 2007″. Healy says Ireland is currently at the very bottom a down-cycle, but that things will soon be on the up.

He’s also announcing the creation of a Tourism Industry Taskforce to work with state agencies to aid with turning things around, and says that it’s essential to target the USA, Germany, Britain and France, which between them provide 70 per cent of visitors to Ireland. The Irish Tourist Industry Confederation is warning though that growth is domestic demand is expected to remain stagnant.

Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport Leo Varadkar is welcoming today’s announcement and the formation of the Taskforce. The minister says:

The Government sees tourism playing a major role in our economic recovery. We presently offer some of the best product and value available anywhere in Europe and I feel sure we can capitalise on that, given the massive global publicity which the upcoming high-profile visits of Queen Elizabeth and President Obama will present.

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