Ottawa, ON – Michelle Ferreri, Conservative Shadow Minister for Tourism, and Tony Baldinelli, Conservative Shadow Minister for Manufacturing and Export Promotion, issued the following statement after witnesses testified at the International Trade Committee on the study of ‘Potential Impacts of the ArriveCAN Application on Certain Canadian Sectors’:
“Hit first and hit hard, the Canadian tourism sector was devastated by the COVID-19 pandemic and is still facing a long road to recovery.
“The tourism industry is finally hoping to see a recovery this summer travel season, but the federal government is standing in its way. By doubling down on requiring the mandatory use of the ArriveCAN application, the Liberal government is actively discouraging travel to Canada.
“In testimony at the International Trade Committee yesterday, we learned that American visitation is not expected to fully recover to pre-pandemic levels until 2026. This is extremely discouraging because American visitation to the Niagara region accounts for 50 per cent of the revenues generated by local tourism. In terms of employment, 40,000 people in Niagara work in tourism and the last thing they need is the federal government standing in their way of achieving economic and financial recovery.
“The Tourism Industry Association of Canada, the Canadian Chamber of Commerce, and the Customs and Immigration Union all confirmed to the committee that the ArriveCAN application is causing major delays at international ports of entry and stalling economic recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic. Its continued mandatory use is disproportionately impacting Canadian travel and tourism.
“This important committee meeting provided ample evidence that ArriveCAN as it currently operates, is hindering travel, tourism, and our overall economic recovery.
“Conservatives have been calling for a plan from the federal government to get Canada out of this pandemic and on to the road of recovery, we have called for the removal of the remaining federal COVID-19 restrictions which stifle the recovery, and for an end to the mandatory use of the ArriveCAN application.
“Instead, the Liberals have failed Canadians, and now travellers and the tourism industry as a whole are the victims of the ArriveCAN application becoming a travel obstacle and a crisis of this Liberal government’s own making at our borders and airports.
“Time is running out for the Liberals to fix the problem they created, to save the 2022 summer tourism season in Canada.”