07th April, 2017 At Tonga Tourism Authority Board the Ministry of Tourism hosted a half-day training aimed to raise awareness of the pillars of sustainability, build private sector capacity through the application of practical sustainable practices and share experiences towards building Tonga a sustainable tourist destination.
The training was specifically for Tonga’s tourism accommodation sector.
Sustainability Tourism takes full account of its current and future economic, social and environmental impacts, addressing the needs of visitors, the industry, the environment and host communities.
Facilitator of the training Ms. Christina Ngale from the South Pacific Tourism Organisation (SPTO) said, “Sharing awareness of sustainability here in Tonga is not just for this Ministry of Tourism but for everyone, stakeholders, locals , and Lines Ministries. Being sustainable is everyone’s responsibility.”
“Getting all of the relevant parties to work together will definitely help improve our way of life and also maintain the 3 Pillars of Sustainability – Environmental, Social-Cultural and Economic.”
Ms. Ngale stressed to participants from Tonga’s accommodation sector that getting to know clients was vital for the thriving of their businesses.
“Your clients won’t just provide you with the money they spent but they can also help you out with the knowledge and skills they have. They can help develop your accommodation into something else. Who knows your client maybe a doctor or an engineer? Interview is one method you could use to get bright ideas and visions from your clients.”
CEO for Tourism Mrs. Fekita ‘Utoikamanu said having wide varieties of products for tourists to choose from was important.
“A better range of products to sell is one way we can make money . The visitors can decide whether to spend his/her money in the products we make. It’s a combination of the products that are being sold. It is not just here but it’s in the region,” she said.
Mrs. ‘Utoikamanu noted that the beautifications of the environment was also important to attract more tourists to Tonga.
Some of the participants who attended the workshop identified that more training is needed to be conducted for town officers in order to raise awareness about sustainable tourism development here in Tonga.
Issued by the: Ministry of Meteorology, Energy, Information, Disaster Management, Environment, Climate Change and Communications