Sydney, Australia – Bracing itself to handle a barrage of questions relating to the Rennell Island oil spill and its impact in the Solomon Islands’ world-class dive offering, a Tourism Solomons-led dive industry team attending the OZTek2019 Advanced Dive Conference in Sydney on the weekend has advised it did not receive a single question.
Tourism Solomons senior marketing officer, Fiona Teama, who was joined by representatives from Solomon Airlines, Dive Gizo , Dive Munda and Uepi Island Resort, said the team had been fully prepared to answer questions from the international dive community in attendance.
” We were happily surprised when we didn’t receive any questions on the oil spill,” Ms Teama said.
“The focus of people’s questions this year were more on exactly what we have to offer and where.
“This is very different from our attendance in 2017 when many of the people we spoke with did not even know where the Solomon Islands are.
“Based on that I would like to think our marketing efforts in positioning the destination and our amazing dive offering are really starting to hit home.”
Tourism Solomons CEO, Josefa ‘Jo’ Tuamoto said the lack of questions from the conference delegates validated the national tourist office’s decision to get the ‘business as usual’ messaging out as quickly as possible following the oil spill.
“Importantly, while we did not want to downplay the Rennell Island situation we knew that we had to move very quickly to let people know that our main dive sites – on Guadalcanal and in Munda and Gizo, both in the Western Province – were similarly unaffected,” he said.
“Judging by the lack of questions at OZTek, the ‘business as usual’ messaging seems to be working.”
Pictured the Solomon Islands team in attendance at OZTek 2019 (from left to right): Kerrie Kennedy, Dive Gizo; Fiona Teama, Tourism Solomons; Jenny Lobo, Solomon Airlines; Raquel Oliveira, Solomon Airlines; Belinda Botha, Dive Munda, and Dave Pearce, Solomon Airlines.