16 August, 2022, 6:00 pm
Fiji has recovered half of its tourism numbers from the same period as 2019. Permanent secretary for Trade and Tourism Shaheen Ali shared this at the Port of Lautoka in welcoming the first cruise ship, Pacific Explorer, yesterday.
“For the first half of this year – we have recovered over half our tourism numbers from the same period in 2019,” he said. “June arrivals were 73 per cent of the same month pre-pandemic.
“By the end of 2022, we are expecting at least 500,000 visitors, with a full recovery expected by 2024.”
The permanent secretary said the local economy is projected to grow by 12.4 per cent this year (by conservative estimates)–– the highest rate of growth ever and this has been fuelled by travel and tourism.
These numbers, he said, were a reflection of air travel alone. The PS remarked that the return of cruise ships into Fijian waters now also marked a significant step in our economic recovery.
“I understand recovery is well underway for Carnival Cruise too – having recently announced over three million guests since the restart about a year ago.”
“I urge Carnival Cruise to continue partnering with the Government, Tourism Fiji, local communities and operators to ensure we realise the full potential of the cruising sector – while spreading its benefits.”