Zim in­ten­si­fies di­as­pora tourism cam­paign

Chronicle (Zimbabwe) - - Front Page - Busi­ness Re­porter

ZIM­BABWE on Fri­day wel­comed a 35mem­ber di­as­pora del­e­ga­tion from the United King­dom, which is in the coun­try to ex­plore pos­si­ble in­vest­ment op­por­tu­ni­ties in dif­fer­ent sec­tors. The visit is a fol­low-up to the re-en­gage­ment mis­sion to the United King­dom by the Min­is­ter of En­vi­ron­ment, Tourism and Hos­pi­tal­ity In­dus­try, Prisca Mup­fu­mira in March this year.

Dur­ing her visit, Min­is­ter Mup­fu­mira im­plored di­as­po­rans to visit the coun­try and ex­plore pos­si­ble in­vest­ment op­por­tu­ni­ties.

“The visit comes at an op­por­tune time when Zim­babwe is look­ing at intensifying di­as­pora tourism as part of the Na­tional Tourism Re­cov­ery and Growth Strat­egy whose ob­jec­tive is to re­cover the lost mar­ket share in var­ied source mar­kets and the United King­dom in par­tic­u­lar,” the min­istry said in a state­ment.

“Di­as­pora Tourism is an es­sen­tial com­po­nent of tourism and suc­cess­ful des­ti­na­tions have lever­aged on this with spe­cific em­pha­sis on get­ting the di­as­po­rans in their dif­fer­ent facets to con­nect to their Zim­bab­wean and African roots in gen­eral.”

The del­e­ga­tion com­prises in­di­vid­u­als from di­verse back­grounds and na­tion­al­i­ties with ex­per­tise in ar­eas such as art and cul­ture, his­tory, tech­nol­ogy, ac­count­ing, teach­ing, le­gal, coun­selling, med­i­cal, en­gi­neer­ing, coach­ing and so­cial work.

Dur­ing their stay the team would em­bark on a scout­ing mis­sion on op­por­tu­ni­ties in health tourism, agri­cul­ture, hous­ing de­vel­op­ment and min­ing. The group would also tour Zim­babwe.

Com­ment­ing on the visit, Zim­babwe Tourism Au­thor­ity chief ex­ec­u­tive, Mr Karikoga Kaseke, said di­as­pora tourism is not only im­por­tant to the tourism econ­omy but to the na­tional econ­omy at large.

He said the di­as­pora tourism pro­gramme will not only look at Zim­bab­wean di­as­po­rans but all African, Euro­pean and Amer­i­can di­as­po­rans.

Over the last 35 years, the num­ber of world­wide in­ter­na­tional mi­grants has al­most dou­bled, from 76 mil­lion to 150 mil­lion. With pro­jected im­mi­gra­tion in­crease es­pe­cially in the United King­dom where it is an­tic­i­pated that to­tal pop­u­la­tion will rise to over 70 mil­lion with 70 per­cent at­trib­uted to im­mi­gra­tion, ZTA says it is cru­cial to lever­age on di­as­pora tourism with the main ob­jec­tive of tap­ping into this mar­ket.

“Zim­babwe in par­tic­u­lar has lost its cit­i­zens to other coun­tries, which brings the much needed im­pe­tus to lure them to con­nect back to their roots,” said the ZTA.

It is es­ti­mated that there are more than six mil­lion Zim­bab­weans spread across the globe in coun­tries such as South Africa, Botswana, Zam­bia, UK, USA, Aus­tralia, New Zealand and Canada, among oth­ers.

The min­istry’s re­cov­ery plan is set to see Zim­babwe em­bark­ing on a num­ber of mar­ket­ing pro­grammes in the re­gion and over­seas.

UK di­as­pora del­e­ga­tion ar­rives at Robert Mu­gabe In­ter­na­tional Air­port last Fri­day

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