Video to boost sales of PNG handicraft

Photo Captions: Australia’s Assistant Minister for Trade, Tourism and Investment, Keith Pitt and local designer and founder of Wantok Clothing, Genevieve Igara-Falevai with her collection.

A HANDICRAFT biosecurity awareness video and a handicraft vendor guide was launched last week by Tourism, Arts and Culture Minister Emil Tamur and Australia’s Assistant Minister for Trade, Tourism and Investment, Keith Pitt.

The materials, which include a biosecurity video on handicraft and a handicraft vendor guide, are designed to help educate both the vendors, artisans and tourists in meeting biosecurity protocols involved in the production, purchasing and handling of handicraft.

“The government of Papua New Guinea is pleased to be working in partnership with the Australian Government to ensure that our people benefit from the investment made in the tourism sector. As you know, more than 80 per cent of the population is rural-based and dependent on sectors such as tourism and agriculture for their livelihood,” Mr Tamur said.

Informed vendors and artisans will see better returns from handicraft exports and stakeholders will be able to minimise the risks of exported handicrafts being rejected at quarantine borders through appropriate inspection and treatment.

“Supporting tourism and rural development in Papua New Guinea to enable economic growth, including empowerment of women is a key focus of the Papua New Guinea-Australia partnership,” Mr Pitt said.

The video, which will be made available on cruise ships, offers information to tourists on what can and cannot be brought into Australia and New Zealand, as the key markets for Pacific tourism. The vendor guide will be distributed among handicraft artisans and vendors to help improve their awareness of biosecurity requirements and product development.

The materials have been developed by the Australia and New Zealand funded Pacific Horticultural and Agricultural Market Access (PHAMA) Program, in consultation with biosecurity authorities in Australia and New Zealand; in collaboration with National Agriculture Quarantine and Inspection Authority, Tourism Promotion Authority and artisans and vendors from the private sector.

As part of PHAMA’s capacity building objective, the program is also supporting a training of trainers’ workshop to help artisans, vendors, quarantine and tourism personnel and other interested stakeholders understand how to use the vendor guide.

PHAMA has also supported the development of similar awareness materials in Solomon Islands and Vanuatu.

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