Surfing Association President Andrew Abel believes there should be policies in place to protect resource custodians so that there is transparency and better dialogue.
Speaking at the 13th UPNG Tourism Convention, the event highlighted some important factors in the tourism industry; working with Private-Public-Partnership and developing policies to protect resources and resource owners.
The Surfing Association PNG is a testament of building protecting resources, whilst at the same time developing tourism through the sport of surfing.
Mr Abel believes developing policies and frameworks, such as the PNG Surf Management Plan, captures both. He highlighted that resource owners must be given priority when conducting businesses on their customary land, as this builds trust and allows custodians to open resources.
“It is our collective duty and challenge for today, for our future generations; as you go out to pursue your dream job in (the) Tourism Sector to always bear in mind, that the traditional resource custodian host communities are part of the negotiations, planning, implantation and management of any new sector,” said Abel.
“From the bottom up, they are an integral part of the tourism product, so as to ensure they benefit directly and indirectly from the exploitation of their resource.”
While public-private-partnerships also plays an important role in building the tourism industry. For the Port Moresby Nature Park, the biggest tourist attraction in Port Moresby alone, the park is an example of what can be achieved through the public private partnership.
The Tourism Convention and Exhibition was hosted by third year UPNG Tourism and Hospitality Management students.
Themed ‘Tourism as a Driving Force for Growth and Development in PNG’ the one day event held seminars and exhibitions, where stakeholders in the tourism industry held information sessions, sharing their experiences with university and high school students.
Supported by the PNG Tourism Promotion Authority, the event was to bring exposure to young Papua New Guineans about bringing development into the country through tourism but not only by tourism operators alone but through combined efforts with the government and stakeholder partners.
By Merilyn Diau-Katam – EMTV Online, Port Moresby