When it is safe to do so, Vanuatu looks forward to welcoming international tourists back to our shores. In the meantime, the Department of Tourism is progressing their plans to build a stronger and more resilient future for the Vanuatu tourism industry.
The Vanuatu Sustainable Tourism Policy VSTP (2019-2030) has a vision to protect and celebrate Vanuatu’s unique environment, culture, kastom and people through sustainable and responsible tourism.
The key goals of the Policy includes tourism that enhances, conserves and protects the environmental and cultural resources of Vanuatu, tourism that brings more equitable income and well-being for Vanuatu and its people and sustainable and responsible tourism products and services developed, supported, and marketed to attract responsible high-value tourists.
Work is in progress in finalising Vanuatu’s Tourism Human Resources Development (HRD) Strategy (2020-2030), to meet the needs of the Vanuatu Sustainable Tourism Policy (2019- 2030). “Tourism is a very competitive global industry,” said Jerry Spooner, Director of Tourism. “Vanuatu’s destination competitiveness depends on the quality of products and services offered. Training and capability development of the tourism workforce should be an ongoing process to adapt the workforce to new and emerging needs. The Vanuatu Tourism HRD Strategy will help ensure that tourism workforce training is targeted to the requirements of the Vanuatu Sustainable Tourism Policy, and to help adapt to new challenges such as COVID-19 and climate change”.
In addition, work is also underway to develop a Tourism Industry Support program (TIS), which aims to support the development and growth of micro, small and medium tourism businesses in all provinces of Vanuatu. The project plans to deliver equitable growth, prosperity and inclusiveness within the tourism industry, to facilitate investment in green infrastructure which is to decrease operating costs and lower emissions, and to identify stakeholders and products that could be scaled up into agritourism enterprises.
Both the HRD and Tourism Industry Support teams are keen to hear the views of the tourism industry and tourism training industry stakeholders. Opportunities for input into the planning processes will be achieved through direct consultations, online surveys, and feedback at the national ‘Niufala Rod Blo Tourism’ week scheduled for the 26th to 29th of October 2020 at the Chief’s Nakamal.
The objective of the week is to have collaborative discussions and validation workshops for the recovery of Vanuatu’s tourism industry. This is to ensure destination wellbeing, resilience, diversification, and sustainability.
“With the support of our tourism sector stakeholders, operators, and partners, we look forward to sharing and validating clear actions with timeframes to work toward. These will form the Implementation Plan of the Vanuatu Sustainable Tourism Policy and will build Vanuatu’s position as the Pacific’s sustainable tourism destination,” concluded Mr. Spooner.