Fears over potential sex tourism in the Pacific

Australian Network News 25 Sept 2013
An international organisation protecting children from sexual exploitation says the Pacific could soon become a major hub for sex trafficking and sex tourism if governments fail to take preventative action.

The New Zealand arm of the child rights network ECPAT International warns the Pacific’s booming tourism industry could potentially lead to the rise in sex tourism.

EPCAT’s national director Alan Bell has told Radio Australia’s Pacific Beat more attention needs to be paid to the potential risks involved and corrective measures need to be taken.

“It’s much better to address these issues with prevention rather than deal with the results,” he said.

“In any country, not just in the Pacific, where there is tourism, there is often sex tourism associated with it…with tourism increasing across the Pacific, I think the time is right for the Pacific to be looking at this.