The Pacific Private Sector Development Initiative (PSDI) has launched a comprehensive tourism reopening framework for Pacific island countries (PICs), providing critical policy guidance as international tourists return in the post-COVID-19 era.

Reopening Borders to Tourism in Pacific Island Countries: Key Lessons and Guidance was prepared for PICs that are in the early stages of reopening their borders to international tourism, or are yet to reopen.

“COVID-19 has been devastating for many of the Asian Development Bank’s (ADB’s) Pacific developing member countries (DMCs),” PSDI Tourism Expert Sara Currie said. “For most, there is an urgent economic need to begin the border reopening process. This requires a balancing act between maintaining public health and restarting tourism activity.”

The framework features key lessons from countries around the Pacific and the world that have reopened, or are advanced in their planning to permit international arrivals after the removal of COVID-19 travel restrictions.

The four priorities outlined in the framework are: (i) public-private coordination in reopening planning; implementation; and monitoring, evaluation, and learning; (ii) border reopening policies and agreements; (iii) health and safety measures for COVID-19-safe tourism; and (iv) stakeholder communications.

Dr Currie said that while the report provides guidance for PICs planning to reopen, it recognizes that approaches will need to be tailored to different country contexts. PSDI stands ready to assist the Pacific DMCs yet to reopen to international tourists.

“Pacific island countries are best positioned to determine their own way forward,” Dr Currie said. “The priorities in the tourism reopening framework should be considered prompts for reflection, discussion, and decision-making.”

PSDI is an ADB technical assistance program undertaken in partnership with the governments of Australia and New Zealand. PSDI supports ADB's 14 Pacific DMCs to improve the enabling environment for business and to achieve inclusive, private sector-led economic growth.

ADB is committed to achieving a prosperous, inclusive, resilient, and sustainable Asia and the Pacific, while sustaining its efforts to eradicate extreme poverty. Established in 1966, it is owned by 68 members—49 from the region.

Source: Press Release