The Zimbabwe Tourism Authority (ZTA) in conjunction with it’s parent ministry, the Ministry of Tourism and Hospitality Industry have stepped up marketing efforts in the UK by participating at the Experience Africa Travel Trade Show in London, the UK. The show runs from 25-27 June 2018 and is a business to business event matching suppliers to buyers across Africa and the UK. Industry players include Shearwater, Africa Albida, Rainbow Tourism Group, Legacy Hotels and Resorts, Amalinda Camp to mention but a few.
“Our participation at Experience Africa comes barely after 3 months after I began my re-engagement tour to the UK and other critical traditional markets. This is a sure sign that we are serious about the UK market and we will continue on this kind of drive to regain the lost market share.” said Hon. Priscah Mupfumira, the Minister of Tourism and Hospitality Industry.
Dr Karikoga Kaseke, the ZTA boss buttressed this offensive drive and said that the UK is a traditional market that contributed immensely to our international arrivals before 1999. “We cannot afford to ignore the UK market as I have always said because it is a very important market to us. In 1999 we received a whooping 189 436 arrivals from the UK and Ireland but these figures took a nosedive since 2000 as we began receiving less than 20 000 arrivals from the same market. The figures have been encouraging this far as we witnessed an encouraging 127% increase where 2016 saw 32 475 arrivals in 2016 to 73 552 arrivals in 2017.” he said. “We are also a sponsor of this London’s edition and are proud to be recognised as such as it gives us prime recognition and an active player in the UK market,” he added.
The organiser of Experience Africa, Mr Byron Shirto expressed excitement and gratitude for Zimbabwe’s participation and sponsorship. “I am Zimbabwe born and have my heart in Zimbabwe so naturally I’m very excited to see Zimbabwe come in in a big way as they have done and be part of this next big thing in B2B platform in the UK as we firmly believe that face to face interaction is still the best way to do business,” he remarked.
Experience Africa is a fast growing prestigious platform for travel B2B exchange across Africa and the event is being held in the financial capital of London, Canary Wharf. Not only does the UK offer tourism opportunities but it is enshrined in the symbiotic relationship where British kith and kin have ties in Zimbabwe. “The relationship between the UK and Zimbabwe goes beyond the businesses facet as it goes right into the bedrooms as there are several family trees between the 2 countries through intermarriages.” Kaseke said.