The Cook Islands have reaffirmed their ongoing commitment to sustainable tourism, with the Associate Minister of Tourism Tingika Elikana signing the Pacific Leader’s Sustainable Tourism Commitment as a key outcome of the Pacific Tourism Organisation (SPTO) meetings currently being held on Rarotonga.
Designed to place sustainable tourism as a top priority for environmental, socio-cultural, and economic development in the region, by signing the Cook Islands join other SPTO members in committing to “making tourism in the Pacific a force for good by adopting the Pacific Sustainable Tourism Policy Framework (PSTPF) to put the sector and our communities on a path to sustainable recovery by 2030”.
Recently developed by the SPTO, this framework aims to ensure that tourism brings positive change to the lives of the people and quality of our environment in the Pacific, so that it can be enjoyed by generations to come. In addition to this national-level commitment, the Cook Islands Tourism Marketing Corporation (CIT) will be encouraging local tourism operators to show their commitment at an industry-level.
Speaking at the SPTO meetings, Associate Minister Tingika Elikana commended the work of the SPTO, reiterated the Cook Islands strong support for the initiative, and encouraged everyone to consider the potential power of tourism to enhance the wellbeing of both our people and place; “As international travel revives and the sector recovers, it is crucial that lessons are learned from recent crises and that steps are taken to embed long-term inclusivity, sustainability, and resilience into our tourism offering as it faces evolving challenges and risks”.
In addition to signing the Pacific Leaders Sustainable Tourism Commitment, the Minister is set to unveil ‘Te Kaveinga Manava Turoto o te Ipukarea – Cook Islands Tourism Development Strategy. Developed and administered by CIT, this strategy will align with the SPTO framework and provide CIT with a roadmap towards developing a more regenerative approach to destination development and responsible travel over the next 5 years.
For more information, enquiries can be made to Sieni Tiraa, Sustainable Tourism Manager, Cook Islands Tourism email: [email protected]
[Source: Cook Islands Tourism Press Release]