Tourism industry and its stakeholders are working hard to ensure that they are ready by early December to welcome tourists again - Lockington

Tourism industry and its stakeholders are working hard to ensure that they are ready by early December to welcome tourists again - Lockington

By Vijay Narayan
Thursday 12/08/2021
Fiji Hotel and Tourism Association CEO, Fantasha Lockington. [Image: File Photo]

Fiji Hotel and Tourism Association CEO, Fantasha Lockington says the tourism industry and its stakeholders are working hard to ensure that they are ready by early December to welcome tourists again.

Lockington says with the vaccination target set to be achieved by November, the industry is working with the Ministry of Health, Ministry of Tourism, Tourism Fiji and other stakeholders to look at the opening framework and which markets Fiji will open up to.

Lockington says they are also working with stakeholders like the Ministry of Economy, the Reserve Bank of Fiji and the Association of Banks on the challenges for the industry as coming from positions of completely being closed or partially opened, the industry members have to replenish all their supplies and be fully ready as they have been closed for 16 months.

She says with the target date set, they are all focusing on ensuring they will be ready.

Newly appointed Tourism Fiji CEO, Brent Hill has told Today’s Traveller that they have a plan and goal in mind and they want to be open by the end of 2021. He says their goal initially is very singular – to reopen Fiji to the world. Initially, their strategy is about a sprint to December.

Hill says despite the terrible toll of COVID on Fiji, the pathway out for the tourism industry is through vaccination.

He says there is still much work to be done on preparedness for reopening with their partners, but in simple terms, Fiji will welcome vaccinated travellers, who submit to and pass a rapid PCR test, and who then stay and interact with certified tourism experiences. Hill says the support from the MOH as well as industry partners is there, and everyone is very focussed on making this work in order to reopen Fiji.


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