With the increased visitor numbers on the back of high demand for Fiji, the Fiji Hotel and Tourism Association (FHTA) is reminding all concerned that the safety and security of our visitors, staff and local communities remains a key priority.
FHTA chief executive, Fantasha Lockington said to ensure we protect the current high standing that destination Fiji is enjoying or risk losing this hard-fought competitive edge, robust partnerships with relevant authorities to foster a safer environment for everyone must be encouraged from all sectors of society and not just businesses.
Lockington said that with tourism contributing over 40 per cent to GDP, the industry impacts foreign exchange revenue, critical tax receipts, vast inter-connected supplier chains, thousands of jobs and lucrative land lease revenue, therefore security concerns should be everyone’s responsibility.
She said the FHTA is working directly with the Tourism Police to provide support and act as a conduit to the tourism operators throughout the country.
Lockington has also welcomed efforts by the Fiji Police Force to enhance crime prevention initiatives after raising its concern about the alarming surge in crime rates in Fiji and the possible negative repercussions of the ensuing warnings from several embassies to travellers.
She added that a great deal of effort, cost and sheer hard work has gone into bringing tourism back from the brink post-pandemic, with the current increased economic benefits being lauded by everyone being positively impacted, including Government through higher tax returns.