Africa remains one of the least tour destinations despite the growth that has been witnessed in tourist arrival on the continent, Zimbabwe’s Minister of Tourism and Hospitality Industry, Prisca Mupfumira raised this on her remarks at the First Ordinary Session of the Sub-Committee on Tourism of the Specialized Technical Committee on Transport, Transcontinental and Interregional Infrastructure, Energy and Tourism (STC-TTIET) in Kenya Nairobi.
The Minister said with international tourist arrivals growing by 7% in the region, Africa, a continent which boasts of the Pyramids of Egypt and the golden coffins, Victoria Falls, flora and fauna amongst other wonders, is one of the fastest growing tourism regions in the world.
“Between 2000 and 2017 international tourist arrivals more than doubled (from 26 million to 62 million),” Mupfumira said. “By 2030, the UNWTO (United Nations World Tourism Organisation) forecasts this figure to reach 134 million arrivals.”
“However, if this figure is expressed as a percentage of the current global arrivals, it would just give Africa a 10% of the total market share.”
Zimbabwe’s Tourism Minister said the establishment of the Tourism Sub-committee under the STC on Infrastructure and Energy, provides the opportunity to address cross-cutting issues that impede the growth of Tourism.
“More forceful and concerted actions are needed to increase tourism growth and create direct and indirect jobs in our travel and tourism industries,” Mupfumira said.
“These efforts will provide us with the opportunities to better align policy actions which have a strong bearing on the future of African tourism.”
“We are also satisfied that the UNWTO has strengthened cooperation at Continental level, having signed a Memorandum of Understanding with the African Union in 2014.”
In 2015 statistics, Africa accounted for 2.3% of the world’s market share of tourists worldwide receipts amongst the continents, with Egypt (26.7%), Morocco (21.3%) and South Africa (18.6%) being the most preferred on the African lands.
Mupfumira, from a country that receives over 2 million tourists a year, said structural barriers continue to hinder progress in Africa,