Call to improve cultural events

National

By ZACHERY PER
PAPUA New Guinea accounts for only two percent of the world’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP) income, and 20 per cent in the South Pacific region, Minister for Tourism, Arts and Culture Tobias Kulang says.
He said the tourism industry was contributing 10 per cent to the global GDP, and 20 per cent to the region, it contributes only two percent to PNG at the moment,” he said.
Kulang made this known while opening the 60th National Gaming Control Board Goroka Show in Goroka last Saturday.
“We have to be more prudent in managing important cultural events like the Goroka Show to attract an increased number of visitors,” he said. “Our people can achieve increased economic gains from the tourism industry. But over the years, such events in PNG have not been structured properly and managed. As a result, the quality has dropped.”
He described the Goroka Show as a “major seller of PNG’s diverse cultures and tradition”.
“We are the last frontier largely unseen and unexplored. A lot we have to offer is still raw and authentic,” Kulang said. “PNG as a destination has been avoided by a vast majority of travelers in the region. (But it is) yet to be seen, dived, travelled, climbed, explored, fished and trekked.”
He said PNG should become better each year as a tourist destination because tourism was one sector which could contribute immensely to national development. “Where else on this earth can you (tourists) see diverse culture on display? We have 800 different languages meaning 800 different cultures.”
He challenged the highland provinces of Chimbu, Jiwaka, Hela and Southern Highlands to start preparing for their shows.
Eastern Highlands Governor Julie Soso supported the show with K120,000.

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