Fiji tourism gets glowing projection

June 24, 2022 4:45 pm

[File Photo]

Fiji’s recovering tourism sector has been given a glowing forecast by the ANZ Bank, which is predicting over 650,000 visitors to our shores this year.

ANZ Senior International Economist, Kishti Sen, in his Pacific Insight, adds that this will see Fiji being ideally placed to maximize its international tourism returns heading into its late June/July/August peak season.

Since the start of the COVID pandemic in 2020, Fiji’s tourism industry buckled and came to a grinding halt until the border reopened last December.

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The Fijian tourism sector is predicting just under 450,000 tourists to arrive here, but this latest number is sure to be a welcome relief.

Sen is basing his projections on the Australian market, as Aussies continue to accelerate holiday plans and Fiji is a popular destination.

He says Australians made 96,160 overseas holiday trips in April, which is only around 17.8% of the pre-pandemic average of 539,550for the month.

Sen adds, as the number of trips returns to the long-run monthly average of 533,248 and the demand for overseas holidays increases, the number of Australians holidaying in Fiji will rise.

With places such as Bali in Indonesia opening up with cheap rates, Sen says Fiji will lose some Australian market share, but experts don’t expect Fiji’s share to fall back to pre-COVID levels of 4.5% in the upcoming peak season.

The bank says Fiji’s advantage over its competitors includes very high vaccine coverage and an ongoing COVID surveillance program.

Sen goes on to add that the advantages will mean that holidaymakers from other key markets, in particular New Zealand, the United States, Canada and the Pacific will add to the numbers, as all have eased international travel conditions recently.

ANZ forecast stands at a total of 288,684 visitor arrivals in the June to August season, which is 6.6% higher than the record 270,862 visitors in 2019.