Tourism is Everybody’s Business, and therefore calls upon the support and participation of all from Tonga and abroad (businesses, Tongan diaspora, local communities and development partners) to work in partnership to ensure its aspirations and goals for sustainable tourism development are met. The ultimate goal is for the benefits of tourism to reach us all.
SSD: The Support Services Division is being re-strengthens through the inclusion of critical support services such as policy and planning functions, procurement and legal services. The enhancement of this division is aiming at providing effective supporting services that are required for effective delivery of outputs from the technical divisions. In return, the Ministry will be able to improve its accountabilities to government, hence their roles supporting its relevant national and organisational outcomes.
IED: The Industry Empowerment Division is set up in this plan focusing on the development and empowerment of the Tourism Industry here in Tonga. It is now a standalone Division separated from the Destination Development Division. Its operational outputs are also revised to reflect its current core responsibilities covering developments of the private sector, management of tourism products and the need to improve management of all tourism related water activities. These changes are directly aiming at supporting the Ministry’s relevant outcomes under the economic and social pillars; and the environmental input which the Ministry is responsible for.
CHD: The Culture and Heritage Division is maintained as a division, but in a separate Program on its own. This change enables the division to clearly highlight its key responsibilities to the nation focusing on tourism. There are three on-going outputs developed under which this division is planning to pursue in this planning period, including better community engagement, better culture information management system and improved compliance to relevant international treaties and agreements. These core roles are aiming at directly supporting the tourism sector as well as other cultural dimensions of the Tongan economy.
DDD: The Destination Development Division integrates significant responsibilities relating to local tourism infrastructure, niche market, festival and events, cruise ships and mostly importantly their connections with the environment. The beautification function is one area of priority that Government has identified, thus this Division will be responsible for the beautification of Tonga, including its communities, public facilities, beaches, parks and all Tonga’s historical sites. The inclusion of managing the activities relating to incoming cruise ships is another change to the role of this division. The revised activities were developed based on lessons learnt from current operation, and in highlighting them as core activities, appropriate resources should be obtained for their successful implementation. In summary, this division will help to manage and facilitate the required development of the local physical tourism sites and activities. Without this division, the impacts on the government’s national priorities like economic growth, health priorities, social and many others will be affected. It must collaboratively coordinate with key agencies to develop not only tourism infrastructure and activities but also other areas critical to the wellbeing of all Tongans.