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Capturing niche markets essential for Papua New Guinea’s tourism sector, new IFC findings reveal

Port Moresby, Papua New Guinea, October 30, 2017— IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, has launched the market-size findings from the Tourism Demand Assessment, in partnership with the Tourism Promotion Authority of Papua New Guinea, today. Adventure, cultural, and historical tourism, are three strong areas for potential growth in Papua New Guinea (PNG), the initial findings reveal. The full report will be launched in November.
IFC is supporting the government of PNG to identify high-spending niche markets for future tourism activities. With the country currently capturing less than one percent of global travelers in these markets, the aim of gathering this 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 over USD469 billion globally, with 15,400 of them visiting PNG annually. Cultural tourism, too, represents a large chunk of the market. While 184 million travelers spend over USD452 billion globally every year, 11,000 of those tourists travel to PNG annually. Around 3.8 million historical tourists specifically travel to see World War I and II sites and relics annually, spending USD5.7 million. PNG draws 16,500 of these tourists.
“While targeting niche markets can be challenging given their fragmented nature, the pay-off is substantial,” said Neal Donahue, IFC’s Head of SME and Value Chain Advisory. “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.”  
With international arrivals in PNG growing by an average of 13% since 2002, the International Visitor Survey shows that tourists have contributed $105 million to the economy in the first half of 2017. Given the numbers, targeting a niche market can prove to be timely for PNG’s tourism sector.
“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,” said Jerry Agus, CEO of Tourism Promotion Authority. “PNG offers a host of products and attractions that can meet the needs of these high-spending niche market travelers,” he added.
IFC’s tourism project in Papua New Guinea is focused on supporting the development of tourism businesses, improving tourism-related conditions, and helping to attract investment in the tourism sector.
About IFC
IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, is the largest global development institution focused on the private sector in emerging markets. Working with more than 2,000 businesses worldwide, we use our capital, expertise, and influence to create markets and opportunities in the toughest areas of the world. In FY17, we delivered a record $19.3 billion in long-term financing for developing countries, leveraging the power of the private sector to help end poverty and boost shared prosperity. For more information, visit www.ifc.org .
Pacific Partnership
IFC’s work in the Pacific is guided by the Pacific Partnership. Australia, New Zealand and IFC are working together through the Pacific Partnership to stimulate private sector investment and reduce poverty in the Pacific.
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