Niche markets seen as areas of tourism growth

Business

ADVENTURE, cultural and historical tourism are areas for potential growth in Papua New Guinea, according to the International Finance Corporation (IFC), a member of the World Bank Group.
It launched the market-size findings from the tourism demand assessment in partnership with the Tourism Promotion Authority.
The full report will be launched next month.
The IFC is supporting the government to identify high-spending niche markets for future tourism activities.
With the country currently capturing less than one per cent of global travelers in these markets, the data is to identify ways to boost the numbers, improve tourism products and create jobs.
Adventure travel is the largest niche market. Around 238 million travelers spend more than US$469 billion (K1.5 trillion) globally, with 15,400 of them visiting PNG a year.
Cultural tourism also represents a large chunk of the market. About 184 million travelers spend more than US$452 billion (K1.4 trillion) globally every year, with 11,000 of those tourists travelling to PNG annually.
Around 3.8 million tourists specifically travel to see World War I and II sites and relics annually, spending US$5.7 million (K18 million). Papua New Guinea draws 16,500 of these tourists.
The IFC’s head of SME and Value Chain Advisory Neal Donahue said: “While targeting niche markets can be challenging given their fragmented nature, the pay-off is substantial. Attracting a greater percentage of these high-spending markets will result in more tourists, greater tourism revenue for operators, and job opportunities in rural areas of the country where a range of these tourism activities are offered.”
Jerry Agus, the chief executive officer of the Tourism Promotion Authority, said: “Understanding the potential market size of these niche markets gives a clear pathway to planning how we need to develop the services, infrastructure, itineraries and marketing campaigns to attract new tourists.”

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