The Fijian tourism industry continues to perform exceptionally as Fiji’s largest foreign exchange earner. In 2017, Fiji received a record 842,884 visitor arrivals which was a 6.4 percent increase from 2016. For the period January to November 2018, total arrivals recorded 793,239 or a 3.6 percent increase over the same period last year. Additionally, for the first time ever, in July 2018, visitor arrivals to Fiji exceeded the 95 thousand mark for a given month – this is unprecedented. This has set Fiji on the path and paved the way for yet another record-breaking year in terms of visitor arrivals.
In terms of earnings, Fiji has achieved a record $1.9billion last year. The upward trend is impressive given the competitiveness of the global tourism industry in today’s economic climate and is a testament to the quality visitor experience of the destination and continued efforts to build demand for the destination, including in emerging markets.
Investment Fiji has also reported an additional 28 tourism projects registered in 2018 (January – September) valued at over $230 million and potential employment for more than 1,800 Fijians. This is a clear indication of investor confidence in the sector and the expected growth over the next few years.
Minister for Industry, Trade and Tourism, Hon. Premila Kumar said, “In line with the Fiji Tourism 2021 Plan, the Fijian Government through the Ministry of Industry, Trade and Tourism, would like to keep the industry on track to achieving its $2.2 billion target. If the latest visitor arrivals and visitor spend statistics are anything to go by, then Fiji is projected to achieve this milestone.”
“Tourism Fiji has set an ambitious programme of events and activities for 2019 which was well received by our industry partners at Industry Day 2018. This will continue to drive demand for the destination and we are excited to see their plans unfold during this year,” highlighted Hon. Kumar.
In response to concerns raised by the Nadi Chamber of Commerce, tourism has its peak and off peak seasons therefore during peak seasons key tourism areas have full capacity whilst others may not. There are many factors that contribute to these and not solely because of taxes. Additionally, the revenue from these taxes contribute to the overall development of the country such as health-care, infrastructure, security and environment protection to name a few, which our people including the tourism industry depend on.
The Fijian Government continues to work with the private sector in attracting tourism yield through international events that not only bring in hundreds of participants into the country but put Fiji on the map as well. Last year Fiji was able to host some key events such as the Ocean Swim Fiji, Fiji Interhash 2018, PGA Fiji International and the Super Rugby match between the Gallagher Chiefs vs Pulse Energy Highlanders.