Today Governor Kitzhaber met with Brand USA CEO Chris Thompson and U.S. Ambassador Philip Murphy at ITB Berlin (Internationale Tourismus-Börse Berlin), the world's largest tourism trade show, promoting Oregon as a top destination for International travelers. International tourism was a bright spot for Oregon in 2012, growing 13% over the previous year with 1.9 million international visitors spending over $300 million in the local economy.
"The rest of the world is learning what we have known for a long time, that Oregon is a special place," said Governor Kitzhaber. "Travel and tourism dollars are a key driver of our economy, employing more than 92,000 Oregonians."
Germany, the United Kingdom, the Netherlands, France, Scandinavia and Italy alone accounted for 142,000 visitors in Oregon in 2012, injecting $64 million into the local economy.
The Governor's presence at the five-day Berlin trade fair supports the ongoing marketing efforts of Travel Oregon and other business partners from around the state. As the world's leading travel trade show, ITB Berlin attracts over 100,000 visitors as well as thousands of travel journalists and writers. Brand USA was established by the Federal Travel Promotion Act in 2010, and is the nation's first global marketing effort to promote the United States as a premier travel destination.
On Monday, the Governor promoted Oregon tourism with Dutch travel journalists in Amsterdam, and on Friday he will promote Oregon wines at a joint Oregon/Washington Wine Reception for ITB Berlin attendees.