19 November, 2021, 6:00 pm
Building confidence for tourists to return to Fiji once international borders reopen for foreigners is vital, says Australian Minister for International Development and the Pacific Senator Zed Seselja.
He said that could only be done if processes to getting visitors safely to Fiji and while on holiday were ensured.
“It’s been quite difficult being the Minister for the Pacific and then being stuck in Canberra,” he said.
“It’s not the way I have envisaged it but I am very hopeful that we are going to see things start to change and one of the ways it’s going to change is that we have to build confidence.”
He said the Australian Government’s investment in the Care Fiji Commitment for tourist operators would assist in ensuring these processes were strengthened for more visitors from Australia.
“I think that is the key going forward. I think there is extraordinary demand out of Australia to come to Fiji.
“So there’s always has been demand for Fiji but I think that’s going to be greater over the next few months.
“I know that for you here in Fiji as tourism operators that it has been such a challenging time.
“We will be signing an agreement with (Tourism Fiji) which is looking at the Care Fiji Commitment which is about accrediting and making sure that the processes are strong.”
He said the audit would be carried out by Canberra-based Aspen Medical.
“I think that will bring confidence, the brand of Aspen and we are very pleased to get right behind this.
“The desire is there. The love for Fiji is there and the genuine friendship between our countries is evident.”