7 May 2007

Fiji tourism boss says emergency rule slows tourism recovery

3:46 pm on 7 May 2007

Fiji's Visitors Bureau says the extension of the state of emergency in the country will slow down the recovery of the tourism industry.

The Fiji government last week extended the state of emergency until the end of the month and the New Zealand foreign ministry has issued a new travel warning for Fiji, saying the security situation remains uncertain.

The Visitor Bureau's chief executive, Bill Gavoka, says it is pleading with the interim regime to review the emergency decree.

"The extension of the emergency decree and things like that do contribute to the crafting of the travel advisory. We are really pleading with the government to look at this very closely because it really affects the recovery programme for tourism."

Bill Gavoka says the latest figures show the industry is on the recovery path and visitor numbers, particularly from New Zealand, are higher than expected.