The University of Papua New Guinea recently signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the PNG Tourism Promotion Authority (TPA), to promote professional studies in Tourism and Hospitality Management.

The MoU focuses on developing the human resource in the Tourism and Hospitality sector, through the partnership of these organisations.

Tourism and Promotion Authority, CEO, Mr. Jerry Agus stated that there is a need to develop the human resource in the country’s growing tourism industry.

“Our tourism industry is now starting to grow, and there is a greater need for us to develop our human resource, especially the tourism sector, because it is a service industry, and everything you do in terms of tourism is to do with people. That is why the development of our human resource is very important,” he said.

The core mandate for TPA is to market and promote PNG as a desired tourism destination and cannot be developing human resource at the same time, Mr. Agus added.

“We have to go out there and partner with people who have the capacity to build our human resource,” he said. There are people within the industry who have the experience but do not have the academic qualifications. We [TPA] thought that it’s appropriate that we make a pathway for them to be recognized by way of getting a certificate, a diploma, and a degree, he said. Head of Tourism and Hospitality Management, from the School of Business and Public Policy, Dr. Joyce Rayel said, “The MOU signed between The University of Papua New Guinea and the PNG Tourism Promotion Authority indicates shared objectives and responsibilities of these two organisations advocating conservation through human capital development.”

“It will intensify synergy between UPNG and TPA through the opening of professional studies in tourism and hospitality management. The MoU also presents the commitment that UPNG has as an institution of higher learning, with the national tourism organisations, by delivering training and programs,” she said. Mr. Agus presented a cheque of K100 000 to UPNG as a token of appreciation from TPA, which will allow the University to begin planning and presenting its professional, academic, training program.