Zimbabwe Tourism set for major strategy session


(Posted 31st August 2016)

While the bid by Zimbabwe’s Minister for Tourism and Hospitality Industry, Dr. Eng. Walter Mzembi, for the top job at the UN’s World Tourism Organization in Madrid is gaining momentum around the world, is at home the focus on the immediate future of the sector, when tomorrow, 01st of September, a national stakeholder convention is taking place.
Held at the Rainbow Towers Convention Centre in Harare will the who is who of the sector convene to strategize on the way forward to return Zimbabwe’s arrival figures to those of just tourism’s haydays before a sharp drop of visitors from South Africa and elsewhere cause the industry severe contraction.

The Office of the President and Cabinet (OPC) in collaboration with the Ministry of Tourism and Hospitality Industry and the Zimbabwe Tourism Authority has organised this stakeholders’ conference on the Ease of Doing Business in the tourism sector under the theme Unlocking Opportunities for Tourism Growth. The workshop is expected to attract top level representation from both the public and private sectors. It is expected to deliberate candidly on all factors affecting the tourism growth including enablers such as transport, information and communication technology and financing. ‘The indaba is also expected to provide tourism stakeholders with the opportunity to spell out obstacles to destination attractiveness and increased investment into the tourism sector by both local and foreign investors. The workshop will provide a platform for objective analysis of the state of the tourism products and services and how best government could facilitate and promote increased growth and development of the sector’ said Mr. Karikoga Kaseke, the ZTA Chief Executive, explaining purpose and focus of the convention.
Amongst the key speakers will be Dr. M.J.M. Sibanda, Chief Secretary in the Office of the President and Cabinet, Mr. R. Kennedy, Chief Executive Officer of Africa Albida Tourism, Mr. T. Ikalafeng, Chairman and Founder of Brand Africa, Dr. S. Munyeza, Chairman VINAL Investment Group and Mr. P. Matamisa the Chief Executive of the Zimbabwe Council for Tourism. The resolutions of the workshop will feed into the ongoing Ease of Doing Business Reforms process intended at streamlining and simplifying investment procedures with the view to encourage both local and foreign investment across the key sectors of the Zimbabwean economy.

Tourism is recognised as one of the four pillars of the economy with immense potential to contribute towards the GDP, foreign exchange earnings, employment creation and opportunities for development. It plays a significant role in the development of the national economy. Mr. Kaseke then added: ‘any efforts in attracting more investments into the sector, increasing destination accessibility as well as enhancing product quality and service delivery would not only go a long way in uplifting the destination’s competitiveness but also raising export earnings generated including those by tourism‘.

More details of the discussions and resolutions agreed upon will be published here in due course.