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The loss of 60 jobs from two hotels at Te Anau last month is sad news for the community, a Southland district councillor says.
A staff member from the Distinction Hotel chain, who wished to remain anonymous, told RNZ the cuts were announced on May 14 and would affect both Distinction hotels in Te Anau.
Cr Ebel Kremer said most of the town’s income came from overseas, as 80% to 85% of its businesses relied on international travellers.
‘‘It is pretty sad news for Te Anau. Te Anau has been significantly hit by the downturn in tourism and just like Queenstown.’’
He said the Milford Sound gateway town had a population of about 3000 people, including Manapouri.
‘‘It is a relatively small community so any reduction in people living in our community has a negative impact. [Having] 60 plus employees losing their employment in our community — as I said — has a significant impact.’’
Despite the challenging time, Mr Kremer said it was important to stay positive as in the long term business in the area would ‘‘bounce back’’.
‘‘Fiordland is unique and Te Anau being right on the edge of Fiordland. It will certainly continue to be a very attractive place to domestic and international travellers.’’
Distinction owner Geoff Thomson could not be reached for comment, and declined to comment to RNZ.