KIGALI Rwanda (Xinhua) — Rwanda is set to present its top tourism potential in one of the largest global tourism conference scheduled for next month in the Capital Kigali.
The small central African country will host 41st Annual World Tourism Conference from 14th to 17th November that aims at promoting tourism as an engine for economic growth and job creation across the continent, through innovative business models, new technologies and strategic partnerships.
The four-day high level event that will be hosted for the first time in Rwanda is expected to convene African leaders, international investors and travel professionals.
It’s organized by the Africa Travel Association (ATA) and the government of Rwanda.
The ATA, a division of Corporate Council on Africa, is the leading global trade association promoting travel and tourism to Africa and strengthening intra-Africa partnerships.
Speaking to reporters on Friday, Belize Kaliza, Chief Tourism Officer at Rwanda Development Board (RDB), is delighted to host major tourism forum that presents an opportunity to the country to showcase its tourism attractions and investment opportunities.
“The event will illustrate how the sector offers unique rich cultural, historical and natural assets to the full benefit of the country’s tourism industry,” she added.
Kaliza explained that Rwanda has stepped up efforts to boost tourism industry through events such as baby gorilla naming ceremonies (Kwita Izina) and Meetings Incentives Conference and Exhibitions/Events (MICE).
According to RDB tourism statistics, the industry registered more than 340 million U.S dollars in revenues in 2015, indicating a 10 percent increase from 2014.
African tourism industry is worth 44 billion U.S dollars, according to Africa Tourism Monitor 2015: Unlocking Africa’s Tourism Potential, a joint report by the African Development Bank (AfDB) and New York University’s Africa House and ATA.
The continent’s travel and hospitality industry has quadrupled in size in less than 15 years, according to the World Tourism Organization (UNWTO).
Africa is one of the world’s fastest-growing tourist destinations, second only to Southeast Asia.