21 May 2020

Keeping Covid-19 out has to be focus - Cook Islands resort owner

7:07 am on 21 May 2020

A resort owner in the Cook Islands says despite the strain on his business caused by Covid-19 restrictions he's in no hurry to see tourists return.

Tamanu Beach Resort's Nick Henry said Covid-19 is a health crisis and ensuring it doesn't reach the Cook Islands has to be the focus.

Aitutaki Lagoon, Cook Islands

Aitutaki Lagoon, Cook Islands Photo: RNZI

Mr Henry said the government has helped his Aitutaki resort weather the financial storm with wage subsidies and free electricity but he looks forward to the economy opening up again.

However, he said he only wants this to happen when it can be done safely.

"Fortunately at this point in time, the Cooks is in a financial position where we're okay."

"Sure businesses are sliding backwards slightly but, you know, I think that the health cost and human cost of bringing that disease in before we're ready to deal with it is going to be more than the economic hardship that we're experiencing right now," he said.