(Via BC Government News)

VANCOUVER The 2017 HSBC Canada Sevens mens rugby tournament is drawing record ticket sales and attention, and has received $220,000 in funding announced today by Shirley Bond, Minister of Jobs, Tourism and Skills Training and Minister Responsible for Labour.

The Canada Sevens tournament will be held March 11-12, 2017, at BC Place Stadium and is part of the HSBC World Rugby Sevens Series, one of the most-dynamic global sporting events on the market with 16 national teams competing. This is the second annual mens rugby sevens tournament hosted in Vancouver with New Zealand winning in 2016. The tournament will receive international media attention and will be broadcast nationally in Canada on TSN.

Todays investment includes $170,000 from the Ministry of Jobs, Tourism and Skills Training and Responsible for Labours Tourism Events Program and $50,000 from the Ministry of Community, Sport and Cultural Developments Major Events Program.

The Tourism Events Program support events that raise national and international awareness of British Columbias tourism experiences and motivate Canadians and people from other countries to travel and experience British Columbia. These events also generate tourism and economic activity in communities and regions throughout the province.

Quotes:

Shirley Bond, Minister of Jobs, Tourism and Skills Training and Minister Responsible for Labour

“Rugby sevens continues to gain popularity and support in Canada and worldwide. We saw over 60,000 fans attend last years tournament in Vancouver, generating over $17.7 million in economic impact through sport tourism in B.C. Overall, the tourism sector generates $14.6 billion in revenue annually, and by investing in events like the Canada Sevens Series in Vancouver, we can continue to bring the world to British Columbia.”

Peter Fassbender, Minister of Community, Sport and Cultural Development

B.C. is recognized as one of the top sport-hosting destinations in the world. By hosting the mens World Rugby Sevens Series for the second year in a row, this event is yet another example why we are the destination of choice for sport events. As momentum builds and rugby sevens in Canada continues to grow, we look forward to cheering on the worlds best players while showcasing all that B.C. has to offer.

Steve Thomson, Minister of Forests, Lands and Natural Resource Operations

Im proud as a former national team member myself, and huge fan and supporter of rugby, to see this investment today. The Canada Sevens Series promises once again to be an unforgettable event and sports experience for fans attending here in B.C. and watching from around the world. We wish the national teams the best as they compete for important World Sevens Series points.

Allen Vansen, CEO, Rugby Canada

“Wed like to thank the Province of B.C. for its valuable partnership and continued support. The HSBC Canada Sevens has quickly become a marquee event in British Columbia, igniting a new passion for rugby in Canada, drawing record-breaking rugby crowds, and once again showcasing B.C.s world-class sport hosting capabilities.

Quick Facts:

  •  The Province invests more than $98 million annually in the tourism industry across every region to grow and market the sector.
  •  In 2015, 4.9 million international visitors came to B.C. – about an 8% increase compared to 2014.
  •  In 2014, the tourism industry generated $14.6 billion in revenue with a direct contribution to B.C.s gross domestic product of $7.1 billion.
  •  The HSBC Rugby Sevens added more seats due to popularity of the event the lower bowl is now sold out. On Jan. 28, 2017, additional general admission tickets were made available to the public with the potential for over 75,000 fans for the two-day tournament.
  •  Vancouver is the sixth stop on the 10-city series tour. Currently, Canada is in 12th spot in the HSBC World Series Standings for 2016-17 after events in Australia, New Zealand, Dubai and South Africa. Hong Kong, Las Vegas, London, Singapore and Paris are the other hosts for the series.
  •  The inaugural Canada Sevens Series, held in March 2016, generated over $17.7 million in economic benefit.Learn More:BC Jobs Plan: http://engage.gov.bc.ca/bcjobsplan/economy/tourism/ For more information about the 2017 HSBC Rugby Sevens Series:http://www.canadasevens.com/mens/To learn more about the Tourism Events Program:http://www.destinationbc.ca/BC-Tourism-Industry/Municipal-and-Regional-District-Tax- Program/Tourism-Events-Program.aspx

Media Contact:

Media Relations
Government Communications and Public Engagement
Ministry of Jobs, Tourism and Skills Training and Responsible for Labour
250 387-2799

Connect with the Province of B.C. at: www.gov.bc.ca/connect