The government of New Zealand has provided funding support of $1 million dollars to the Niue Tourism Office. According to the Director of Niue Tourism Micah Fuhiniu-Viviani earlier this week, the funding is to help support the work, planning and programmes of Niue Tourism such as their strategic planning, maintenance of tourist attraction sites, and building staff capacity.
Director of Niue Tourism Micah Fuhiniu-Viviani told BCN News that she is very grateful for the ongoing support from the Niue and New Zealand governments especially for the funding support for the Tourism Reset programme, after more than two years of closed borders and no tourists on the island.
While the funding is well received and will be spent on product development and preparing the industry, the tourism operators on the island are still facing the challenges of not having enough people available to work in the tourist industry.
Fuhiniu-Viviani said that this challenge is not just for the tourism operators, the labour shortage is affecting all businesses, according to a business survey conducted by the NTO and the Chamber of Commerce on the challenges businesses are facing.
“Again the labour shortage was brought up there was also a gap in terms of the services and products available to support the visitors that are coming to the island.
“There is also material issues, freighting issues as well has had a major impact on tourism and the private sector as a whole. So there are a lot of challenges, but we’re working closely with our counterparts on the island, the Chamber of Commerce to address some of those challenges we’re facing”, said Micah Fuhiniu-Viviani.
Despite the labour shortage in the private sector, the Niue Tourism Office has recruited two new staff members including former Niue Tourism Director Hayden Porter who will be working as an advisor to the Niue Tourism Authority and the Office.
“Hayden was brought on as an advisor to Tourism. He was brought here to help with our Tourism Reset plan, having had previously here in Niue. He was already familiar with what Niue is about and we would like to offer”
Porter who is the immediate former CEO of the Royal New Zealand Yacht Squadron will bring his experience to help with future plans of the Niue tourism sector and will be mentoring the staff, a critical part of capacity building for the team at Niue Tourism.