Are beaches a ribbon of economic gold?
40th MEETING of the ASEAN National Tourism Organizations, Philippines
Surfersvillage Global Surf News, 9 May, 2014 - Beach tourism in Australia and South-East Asia will grow to become one of the primary economic drivers of the region for decades to come, if beaches are well managed and valued as an irreplaceable natural resource.
“When other resource industries such as forestry, fisheries and mining begin to see a downturn, beaches and beach regions will be the ribbon of economic gold”, a global beaches expert will tell the 40th Meeting of the ASEAN National Tourism Organizations in the Philippines next week.
Best-selling beaches author and award winning coastal advocate, Brad Farmer, who has 30 years of research and engagement with Australian and global beach communities, said “the economic destiny of beaches as a tourism resource lies in striking the right balance between profit and preservation”.
Mr Farmer will tell the ten ASEAN National Tourism Organisations that “while iconic destinations such as the Gold Coast, Phuket and Bali will continue to attract tourists, there is a sweeping tidal flow of beach tourism choices toward destinations which offer unique, more natural and less commercialised coastal experiences”.
Mr Farmer, who was earlier this year honoured with the ABS Surfing Spirit Hall of Fame Award began writing about beaches in 1985 with the first Surfing Guide to Australia and last year authored with Prof. Andrew Short, the sold-out benchmark publication, 101 Best Australian Beaches which was supported by Tourism Australia.
The former Senate Adviser has founded many peak coastal groups in Australia and internationally including World Surfing Reserves with Kelly Slater. The movements seek to engage coastal communities and governments toward greater understanding and preservation of beaches.