19 May 2009

Claiming to be recession-free, Cooks launches new tourism promotion

3:13 pm on 19 May 2009

The Cook Islands Government says so far it has felt little impact of the global recession and this has prompted a tourism promotion of the country as the world's first Recession Free Oasis.

The Tourism Minister, Wilkie Rasmusssen, says travellers tired of hearing about the economic doom and gloom have the chance to go to a country that they are billing as a place unaffected by the recession.

The Minister says the Cooks is heavily dependent on tourism and while much of the world suffers, the local industry is reporting sustained forward bookings, while there are new operators starting up and more people are being employed.

He does admit that the country has felt some buffeting from the downturn.

"We are right at the end of the bottleneck and whatever happens in the bigger world eventually will have an impact in the Cook Islands. Although there are some impacts that we are seeing, however in terms of country revenue, in terms of the private sector's ability to generate work and revenue, it is still unaffected."

Wilkie Rasmusssen