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‘SPTO Advocates for the ‘Culturalisation of Commerce’.

Friday, June 15th, 2018

 SPTE

PRESS RELEASE

SPTO Advocates for the ‘Culturalisation of Commerce’.

15 June 2018, Suva, FIJI –The South Pacific Tourism Organisation attended the 4th Meeting of Pacific Ministers for Culture in Nadi and was represented by SPTO CEO, Chris Cocker who emphasized in his presentation the importance of ‘culturalisation of commerce’ as opposed to the ‘commercialisation of culture’.

“The ‘culturalisation of commerce’ is what we need to be emphasizing in our regional tourism industry as this is what will preserve our Pacific culture whilst making an economic impact” said Mr. Cocker.

The meeting hosted by SPC discussed cultural production in the Pacific region, strengthening Pacific voice at the global level and partnerships for cultural development in the Pacific region.

SPTO was invited by SPC to participate at the meeting specifically to be a panelist for two sessions on Cultural Production in the Pacific region and Partnerships for cultural development in the Pacific region.

“This meeting is vital to the work SPTO is doing in the region, specifically sustainable tourism where one of the key pillars is ‘culture’. It is the essence of what we are selling in the Pacific so I am delighted that the regional ‘Culture Strategy’ and support for the culture sector in the region as well as mainstreaming and integration of culture across sectors for sustainable development were part of discussions” said SPTO Chief Executive Officer, Chris Cocker.

“I am also pleased that the Outcomes of the meeting included a commitment for the development of culture tourism in the region. The Ministers agreed that the SPC will coordinate the proposals for the ACP Cultures + Programme funding in 2019 based on regional priorities identified in the Regional Culture Strategy Phase. These priorities include support to value chains development for culture and tourism”, said Mr. Cocker.

SPTO also shared its experience of the World Indigenous Summit (WITS) 2018 events in New Zealand last month. The key highlights being the importance of using tourism as a tool for reviving our cultural values and traditions, sharing our own stories in enhancingvisitors’ experiences and ensuring that the region looks at the ‘cultralisation of commerce’ as opposed to the commercialisation of culture.

“There is potential for closer collaboration between the culture and tourism sectors as there is already a lot of existing synergies to build on such as opportunities available at USP for studies in Cultural Heritage and Pacific Studies with courses for practitioners and those open to all students” said Mr. Cocker.

Also discussed were various opportunities for Cultural Tourism development, ACP/EU funding for ‘Cultural development’, which can be accessed by countries, or regional and national partners.

SPTO also highlighted that Pacific Island countries, especially Kiribati stressed the importance of highlight Value Chain Development as a priority that will ensure the equitable sharing of benefits from tourism and the handicraft sub- sector to communities in particular those in rural areas and outer islands

- ENDS –

About SPTO

Established in 1983 as the Tourism Council of the South Pacific, the South Pacific Tourism Organisation (SPTO) is the mandated organisation representing Tourism in the region. Its 18 Government members are American Samoa, Cook Islands, Federated States of Micronesia,

Fiji, French Polynesia, Kiribati, Nauru, Marshall Islands, New Caledonia, Niue, Papua New Guinea, Samoa, Solomon Islands, Timor Leste, Tonga, Tuvalu, Vanuatu and the People’s Republic of China. In addition to government members, the South Pacific Tourism Organisation enlists a private sector membership base

For further information, please contact:

Alisi Lutu, Marketing Manager

South Pacific Tourism Organisation (SPTO)

Email: alutu@spto.org or +679 3304177

 


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