FIJI NEWS

Political stability boosts economic growth, says TF

Written By : EMOSI LASAQA. The political impasse between New Zealand and Fiji should not have a major impact on the industry but political stability is important as it creates
01 Jan 2009 12:00

Written By : EMOSI LASAQA. The political impasse between New Zealand and Fiji should not have a major impact on the industry but political stability is important as it creates a climate for economic growth, says Tourism Fiji chairman Patrick Wong.
He said the industry was more concerned with the challenges posed by the global financial crisis, deterring travel or affecting the spending power of the average visitor to our shores.
“The issue is a bilateral matter between Fiji and New Zealand,” said Mr Wong. “Relations have to be quickly rectified at a diplomatic level before any permanent long term perception sets in”
Mr Wong said there was a lot trade between the two countries and New Zealand had been our second major source market for the tourism industry.
He said Tourism Fiji did not expect any major impact on visitor arrivals with the New Zealand Acting High Commissioner being expelled.
“It is a known fact that Fiji is a safe destination with friendly hosts and I cannot see the incident deterring visitors to our shores,” he said. “November 2008 saw an 8.3 per cent visitor arrival growth out of NZ over the same month in 2007.”
He said the NZ Government had reworded its travel advisory following the expulsion of its Acting High Commissioner.
However the travel advisory has not been heightened but it remains at “some risk” and advises “caution” saying told Fiji is clam but rapid deterioration cannot be ruled out.
The New Zealand ‘s foreign minister Murray McCully told Newstalk ZB that “there is no reason for New Zealand tourists to stay away from Fiji” and “there is unlikely to be a problem for anyone other than journalists or people planning to protest against the Government”




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