Solomons eyes MICE market to build tourist numbers
The lucrative Meetings, Incentives, Conferences and Events market, MICE in travel industry parlance, is the Solomon Islands Visitors Bureau (SIVB) strategy to build tourist numbers.<!--more-->
The bureau has recently announced its plans to position the destination as a new and alternative venue for this market segment. SIVB CEO, Josefa ‘Jo’ Tuamoto told travel industry website eturbonews.com, “While our MICE activity is still relatively small and currently we mainly see incentive and small conference groups, we view the sector as playing a major role in the Solomon Islands benefiting from the ‘Big Three’ – generation of foreign exchange, employment and foreign investment.”
The sector has long been identified as playing a major role in tourism becoming the destination’s key source of foreign exchange earnings within the next 10 years, he told the website.
But things are about to change and Tuamoto said with the Solomon Islands government had identified the opportunity the sector represents and was drawing up plans to install the facilities and accommodation base the destination needs in order to cater to the lucrative convention market.
“Large conventions are a different matter and while several of the bigger hotels in and around Honiara are very well equipped to handle large groups, our MICE experience to date has largely revolved around smaller groups.
“If we are to be in position to lure the MICE market into our islands, we have to install the necessary requirements to make us an attractive option to many of our South Pacific neighbours,” he added.