19 Oct 2007

Pacific leaders consider more tourism promotion

2:54 pm on 19 October 2007

Pacific leaders, meeting in Tonga this week, have agreed to reconsider their current levels of support to their tourism industries.

Samoa's prime minister, Tuilaepa Sailele Malielegaoi says it is a sector where Pacific Island countries have a comparative advantage and can compete internationally.

Tuilaeapa says tourism industries contribute to the economy, generate substantial foreign exchange inflows, create jobs and make large contributions to government revenue.

He says tourism has an important role to play in achieving the goals of the Pacific Plan which includes economic growth.

The regional travel body has set a target of tourism earnings of two billion US dollar a year for the South Pacific by 2010 which it says can be achieved if current trends are maintained.