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Direct Flights, More Tourists: Koya Explains

The introduction of direct flights to Singapore for Fiji Airways will boost the increasing visitor numbers from growth market in Asia and Europe, says the Minister for Industry, Trade and
17 Nov 2015 13:27
Direct Flights,  More Tourists:  Koya Explains
Foreign Affairs Minister Inoke Kubuabola (left) and Minister for Trade and Tourism Faiyaz Koya outside Parliament yesterday. Photo: RONALD KUMAR.

The introduction of direct flights to Singapore for Fiji Airways will boost the increasing visitor numbers from growth market in Asia and Europe, says the Minister for Industry, Trade and Tourism, Faiyaz Siddiq Koya.

Mr Koya said: the tourism sector had never been so buoyant with a record 692,630 visitor arrivals and earnings $1.4 billion for 2014.”

He said with the current growth rate of 9.2 per cent from January to September, they were set to surpass the target of 714,000 visitors.

“Next year we have set a target of five per cent growth in the visitor arrivals or 749,700 and the aim of the Fijian Government is to increase the size of the pie, hence investment marketing in our traditional markets of Australia and New Zealand will continue to explore untapped segments.

“In terms of income from this sector for the first six months of 2015 , yield from tourism has increased by 12.2 per cent or $41.2 million increase compared to the same period in 2014 or $688.5million. Therefore, it is not just about arrival numbers as some claim, but it is about quality tourists who spend time and money in Fiji.

“The approximate increase of $7million in the Tourism Fiji Marketing grant which will now be $30million, will enable Tourism Fiji to reach out to markets where Fiji lacks presence and focus marketing strategies in the existing markets to increase the yield, this includes making Fiji more than a sun and surf destination, with golf, sports, adventure and culture as important elements of our industry,” he said.

Mr Koya said next year Fiji would host its first Super Rugby match between the Crusaders and Chiefs.

“This would bring in new stream of visitors, create employment and consolidate Fiji as a sports destination.

“Today there are more hotels and resorts owned by Fijians than in 1990. For example  FNPF owns the  InterContinental Fiji Golf Resort and Spa, Holiday Inn Suva, has 25 per cent stake of Grand Pacific Hotel, the Vision Group owns the Hilton, Tanoa Hotels is owned by Reddy Group, Ramada hotels (under construction) is by the Gokals, to name a few ,” he said.

Mr Koya also refuted claims made leader of National Federation Party leader, Biman Prasad that tourist would pay 11 per cent more while holidaying in Fiji.

Mr Koya said they would pay only five per cent more.

Feedback: arieta.vakasukawaqa@fijisun.com.fj

 

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