Last year PNG received over 86 thousand visitors, whose visits had direct economic impact.
These finding were revealed today in Port Moresby by PNG Tourism Promotion Authority (PNGTPA) in partnership with the International Finance Corporation.
The 2017 International Visitor Survey launched today reveals that PNG generated US$205 million or K660 million.
“Most of the time when we go out and talk about the importance of this industry, we are asked how much tourism contributes to the country….but today is a great opportunity to come up with concrete statistics and figures that give us substance to go before the government and put our case forward,” said Jerry Agus, the PNGTPA chief executive officer.
The survey further found that 54 percent of the visitors were business travellers, 25 percent were tourists while 11 percent were individuals visiting family and friends.
The iconic Kokoda Trail and Cultural and History Tourism are the main products attracting visitors into the country.
Despite the healthy statistics, PNG is suffering from a holiday market gap where only about a quarter of visitors are holiday travellers, which are well below regional competitors such as Fiji and Vanuatu.
“It’s clear the country is lagging behind its regional competitors but greater investment can help PNG boost holiday arrivals, hence diversifying the economy and spreading benefits to rural areas,” said Becky Last from International Finance Corporation.
Both the government and private sector will need to make long-term investments to develop and grow the tourism industry as the survey shows that PNG has the potential.
(The presentation today)