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Papua Expeditions/cv.Ekonexion achieved the Runner Up status in the 7th Wild Asia Responsible Tourism Awards, the only award of its kind in the Asian realm.

PE Runner-up in WARTA 2013

Released November 17, 2013

Papua Expeditions/cv.Ekonexion achieved the Runner-up status in the 7th Wild Asia Responsible Tourism Awards in the category Most Inspiring Responsible Tour Operator. Still the only award of its kind in the Asian realm, WARTA essentially aims to identify and encourage leaders in sustainable tourism.

Wild Asia Responsible Tourism Award 2013

Amy McLoughlin, Wild Asia's Responsible Tourism Awards Coordinator, wrote us: 'On behalf of Wild Asia and this year's Judging Advisory Panel, we have genuinely loved learning about your operations and commitment to responsible tourism. I mean it when I say, this year has been particularly tough for judging. Our Finalists all had so many unique strengths, situations, innovation and passion. Although your application was extremely strong in many areas, and we have been very impressed with your achievements to date – I regret to inform you that you have not been selected as a Winner this year. Your Finalist status remains and you should congratulate your efforts as coming in second place. It is certainly a big achievement to have made it this far.'

Like Wijaya, Founder of Papua Expeditions/cv.Ekonexion said: 'Wild Asia's external assessment and recognition of our work is an extremely important regional accreditation. After all, the WARTA remains the only award of it's kind throughout the Asian realm. Generally, the ecotourism or responsible travel industry tends to be fraught with green-washing, extremely so in poorly transparant countries like Indonesia, where there tend to be many regulations but little or no enforcement. As a direct consequence, there is a strong free-riding effect and many tour products and services remain in the black economy. This in turn undermines the efforts of genuine entrepreneurs, who's capacity to develop, initiate, and implement appropriate social and environmental action, is entirely dependent on their economic performance. By carefully choosing who to entrust with organizing a travel experience, consumers can help to make a real difference, but green-washing techniques can be very effective, and tour fare remains the decisive factor in the selection process of a tour operator for most prospective travelers. Certification may help consumers to make the responsible choice, but there are many schemes with confusingly varying standards, and for most small or micro-entreprises that typically deliver tourism products and services, the financial burden that comes with certification is both hard to bear and difficult to justify against the current backdrop of relatively limited market receptiveness toward selection of responsible yet inevitably more expensive operations. WARTA thus fills an important gap in providing expert external assessment that is not only thorough, independent and authoritative, but also comparative on a grand regional scale. And of course, as a potential bonus there is the significant subsequent exposure to those entrepreneurs who are judged to really make a difference. What a wonderful initiative this is, and on behalf of our entire team, I would like to take this opportunity to commend Wild Asia on its extraordinary vision on responsible tourism.'

Related links

Read on about Wild Asia's Responsible Tourism Initiative (RTI).

Read on about Wild Asia's Responsible Tourism Awards (RTA).

Read on about the 2013 Wild Asia Responsible Tourism Awards.

Congratulations to all our worthy winners and finalists.
All of them are role models for the industry. Their investment in community engagement, workers’ welfare, cultural conservation and environmental stewardship – make the travel industry a more exciting place to work. Most importantly, they’re supporting long lasting development in their destinations across Asia, ensuring a more sustainable future for the places we love to visit.
Amy McLoughlin, Responsible Tourism Awards Coordinator, Wild Asia

Wild Asia's external assessment and recognition of our work is an extremely important regional accreditation. After all, the WARTA remains the only award of it's kind throughout the Asian realm. WARTA fills an important gap in providing expert external assessment that is not only thorough, independent and authoritative, but also comparative on a grand regional scale. And of course, as a potential bonus there is the significant subsequent exposure to those entrepreneurs who are judged to really make a difference. What a wonderful initiative this is, and on behalf of our entire team, I would like to take this opportunity to commend Wild Asia on its extraordinary vision on responsible tourism.
Like Wijaya, Founder, Papua Expeditions/cv.Ekonexion