Zim intensifies diaspora tourism campaign
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