SME support needed, says Seeto

FIJI Hotel and Tourism Association president Dixon Seeto says small and medium tourism enterprises in the country should be given more attention and assistance because of their potential to employ a large number of people and boost the national economy.

He said this as he lauded the South Pacific Tourism Organisation’s workshop this week in Nadi to train small and medium enterprises in e-marketing.

“More needs to be done because SMEs are the backbone of economic development and provide employment for a significant portion of workers in the tourism and other related industries,” he said.

Mr Seeto said Government had shown increased support for SMEs and this would augur well for tourism and national development as they developed over the next few years.

“Perhaps the biggest positive for SMEs is the fact that the money generated from these businesses remains in the country and a lot of SMEs are spread around the country and this enhances development.

“Even initiatives like the government’s education grants for students interested in agriculture where they start their own planting programs are SMEs.

“All these types of programs complement national development and we do need more of these.”

SPTO CEO Ilisoni Vuidreketi said online bookings and the use of internet technology was a very essential part of tourism because if offered remote and niche market tourism businesses the opportunity to increase visibility via the world-wide web.

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