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February 23, 2021 - Halifax, Nova Scotia: Discover Halifax will be presenting the region’s first Integrated Tourism Master Plan (ITMP) to Halifax Council today with the primary goal to achieve inclusive economic growth for all communities within the municipality through tourism. The ITMP represents an important part of the tourism industry’s recovery for a wide variety of businesses that account for approximately 34,000 jobs in a typical tourism year.

“The tourism sector has been especially hard hit by the pandemic. It is vitally important that the industry is prepared and ready to hit the ground running as soon as it’s safe to welcome visitors again. By investing in strategic planning now, we are laying the groundwork for a stronger and faster recovery,” said Andy Fillmore, Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Infrastructure and Communities and Member of Parliament for Halifax, on behalf of the Honourable Mélanie Joly, Minister of Economic Development and Official Languages and Minister responsible for Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency (ACOA).

Halifax Council and ACOA first supported the development of a tourism master plan in Fall 2019. ACOA provided a $195,000 non-repayable contribution through the Innovative Communities Fund to Discover Halifax, to assist with the project’s development.

Discover Halifax, the region’s non-profit sales and marketing organization, sponsored its development through a community-first approach that included hiring consultants with expertise in tourism, conducting extensive consultation and engagement, research, and asset mapping. The plan was expected to be released in Spring 2020, but it was put on hold while Halifax responded to the global pandemic that created a health and economic crisis for all destinations.

“We know the tourism industry will recover faster with a plan, and we also believe that our ‘community-first approach’ presents us with the opportunity to shape this growth in a way that not only supports the industry but maximizes the benefits for all citizens,” said Ross Jefferson, President and CEO of Discover Halifax.

Halifax Partnership, the organization responsible for executing Halifax’s Economic Growth Plan has endorsed the ITMP as an important part of the region’s recovery. Halifax’s ITMP includes four goals that align with the city’s Economic Growth Plan: grow tourism revenues, employment, enrich the lives of residents, and align with related strategies. In total, 28 priority initiatives supporting six strategic themes, have been identified – all with a focus on helping the city realize its vision of Halifax as a globally recognized visitor destination.

“Halifax’s Integrated Tourism Master Plan provides a foundation for jobs and inclusive, sustainable growth, which is vital as we recover from the economic impacts of COVID-19 and plan for the longer-term,” says Wendy Luther, President & CEO, Halifax Partnership. “Collaborating with partners like Discover Halifax to grow our city has never been more important, and we’re looking forward to working closely together to achieve Halifax’s economic goals in the months and years ahead.”

Discover Halifax will be hosting a virtual event on March 4 from 1:00 p.m. to 2:30 p.m. to celebrate the work that has been happening to help the tourism industry recover and build back better. More information can be found at

Quick Facts:

Between November 2019 and January 2020, Discover Halifax hosted 32 engagement events with more than 300 session attendees and 234 survey responses to an online survey to contribute to the ITMP.

28 initiatives have been identified in the ITMP Action Plan with the hope to be initiated or completed by 2025. Of these, 15 are deemed first-term priorities, 11 mid-term priorities, and two are longer-term priorities.

In a typical year, tourism revenue for the Halifax region is estimated to be $1.3 billion or 54 per cent of the provincial total. Loss in revenue in 2020 is an estimated $750-$800 million.

Additional Resources:


About Discover Halifax
Discover Halifax is non-profit, membership-based marketing and sales organization in partnership with the Halifax regional government, the Hotel Association of Nova Scotia and participating industry members. Since its inception in 2002, Discover Halifax’s goal is to promote Halifax as a destination of choice for leisure and business travellers. Halifax welcomes 5.3 million overnight stays each year, who spend over $1 billion. Halifax alone represents over 54% of all visitation to Nova Scotia, and 34,000 people are employed in the tourism industry.

Media Contact:

Monica MacLean
Communications Director
Discover Halifax

Chris Brooks
Communications Director, Nova Scotia
Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency