“While the coalition government is making efforts to diversify the economy, we will still take care of tourism,” was the word from Assistant Minister for Tourism and Civil Aviation, Alitia Bainivalu in parliament yesterday.
In her contribution to the national budget debate, Bainivalu said, “$30 million was allocated for tourism marketing, and the ministry fully intends to continue to maintain brand presence in our traditional markets while pursuing emerging markets, which we project will bring in greater yields.”
She pointed to upcoming events, like the Spartan Games later this year, and their potential to “amplify the Fiji brand in the global market” and attract visitors who wouldn’t normally come to Fiji.
The Assistant Minister also pointed to the allocation of FJ$500,000 for an International Civil Aviation Authority liaison officer for the Pacific’s small island developing states (SIDS).
“This will help raise aviation safety standards in the Pacific considerably, and when we host this office, it will provide the platform for easier access to (International Civil Aviation Organization) ICAO expertise and assistance, which is also the conduit for civil aviation authorities within our Pacific neighbours,” she said.
The ICAO office will be based in the CAAF compound in Nadi.