by Fabian Hakalits – EM TV, Port Moresby
Training is the key way forward for East New Britain in achieving its tag as a tourism province.
Project Manager Kayleen Allen, from the Tourism Promotion Authority Australia, says a standard must be set that will cater for international tourists.
But for this to be acquired, stakeholders within the tourism industry must prioritise workplace training and focus their commitments on achieving the three-year marketing plan.
Speaking at a meeting in Kokopo, Allen said the three-year marketing plan must be implemented to help East New Britain achieve top standards.
The meeting was organised by the Tourism Promotion Authority and attended by stakeholders within the industry, including Air Niugini, hotel and tour operators and other local business houses. Several aspects were discussed to help East New Britain province achieve its tourism tag.
Allen said it would be waste of time and resources if there is no serious commitment from those within the tourism sector. A holistic approach, hard work and commitment are the way forward.
The three-year marketing plan covers several aspects, from integrating campaigns, training, product development raising awareness, education and motivation. It also evaluates all tourism activities in East New Britain.
Assessment will be based on areas like customer services, pricing structure at the hotel industry, tour packages, scheduling, expectations of customers, and training with law and order.
National flag carrier, Air Niugini has supported the national government’s initiative, introducing the direct Rabaul-Cairns service.
General Manager for Commercials, Dominic Kaumu said Rabaul will be used as a gateway for visitors travelling to and from Cairns to Rabaul and onto other Niugini Island ports, including Kavieng, Hoskins, Buka and Kieta.
Meanwhile, the national government’s plan of making East New Britain a tourism hub has been supported well by their provincial government.
Promotion and expansion of tourism activities have been backed up by their provincial government, with K1.5 million allocated to PNG Tourism Promotion Authority for a three year period.
The national government’s initiative is to make Rabaul the tourism hub of Papua New Guinea, Lae as the industrial centre, Mount Hagen as the agricultural capital and Port Moresby as the administration nerve centre.