The Minister for the Punanga Nui Market – Hon George Maggie Angene – says now the quarantine free travel bubble between New Zealand and the Cook Islands is open, he’s expecting the market to re-open to pre-Covid-19 days, with more produce and wares on sale than we’ve seen in recent times.
“In fact I’m hoping vendors will re-open bigger and better than before covid, with new ideas and new products to offer our visitors and home people too. Let’s throw off this cloud that’s been hanging over our heads and ring in a new and brighter future. We’re innovative and enterprising people, so lets see what we can come up with.”
The market manager – William Taripo – says to encourage and help vendors to open up again, stall holders will be given a four week rent holiday as an incentive.
The Minister says, “We are looking forward to seeing the market back in full swing again, and I’m encouraging vendors to get ready now for this weekend, and the return of visitors to our island. We know the last 14-months without visitors has been tough for vendors and other business people. But the bubble is open now, and it’s time to get match-fit again to cater for visitors. They have been hanging out for a warm, friendly, tropical holiday; along with our tropical fruits and uniquely island food and hospitality.”
The head of the Cook Islands Investment Corporation (CIIC) Allan Jensen says, “Current bookings are telling us that it will take a week or two for the flow of tourists to build up towards pre-Covid times, so we should take advantage of that gap to get ourselves back into the swing of things.”
“As a further step to breathe new life into the market, CIIC along with Tourism and the Business Trade Investment Board are planning some gala activities to mark our re-opening, and these will be announced on Friday. In the meantime, use the time to plan your own re-opening.”
“Kia orana tatou katoatoa.”