Angelita da Costa became aware of sustainable tourism while studying in university, as some of the courses covered the importance of adopting sustainability in the sector. She later learned more about the concept when she started working at the Ministry of Tourism in Timor Leste.
“As one of the key sectors to advance Timor-Leste’s economic development, the sustainable tourism concept encouraged our people to live sustainably, especially those who work in the tourism sector,” she said.
Ms Costa heads the Department of International Relations at the Ministry of Tourism, Commerce and Industry in Timor Leste.
She shared that she has been involved in several sustainable tourism projects, but the ones that stood out for her were the Community Based Tourism work she has been involved in.
“The CBT Project is located in Wailili, Baucau District. My role as a trainer was to share good practices about natural resource conservation and visitor management,” she said.
“For Timor-Leste to achieve Goal 4 on Healthy Islands and Oceans of the Pacific Sustainable Tourism Policy Framework in the Pacific, all parties need to work together. The Government has to take the lead and work closely with its tourism stakeholders to raise awareness of the community on the importance of maintaining a healthy environment, particularly the ocean using the “3Rs” Reduce, Reuse and Recycle concept.”