1 May 2008

Calls for Fiji's interim government to help struggling businesses

11:16 am on 1 May 2008

The Fiji Islands Hotel and Tourism Association says the Interim Government can do more to help hotels and resorts cope with rising fuel, food and tax bills.

About 50 construction and maintenance staff from the Musket Cove resort, on Malololailai Island in the Mamanuca group, are to be laid off over the next few months.

The Association's president, Dixon Seeto, says many hotels are still discounting rates which they thought they would have stopped by the peak season last year.

He says he is happy to see the interim Prime Minister has a better understanding of what a buoyant tourism industry can do after his recent visit to Dubai.

"I certainly endorse what he said about his aim of making Fiji tourism contribute more to the GDP from where it sits at 17% now to say 25%. And from that, I just hope that through his aligned ministries he will lay down the strategies and the policies to enable that to happen."

Dixon Seeto says to do that, would involve the Fiji visitors bureau, and that would need more funding.