Launch of Royal Tour Film: A turning point towards restoration of AICC’s former glory

THE launch of the Royal Tour Film, by President Dr Samia suluhu Hassan was a turning point in Business Tourism industry  in Tanzania after the Covid-19 Pandemic devastated the industry not only in the country but globally.

The President launched the Royal Tour Film at the Arusha International Conference Centre (AICC) Simba plenary Hall on April 22, 2022 with the aim of showcasing Tanzania’s unique attractions in the global tourism market to attract more visitors and investments in the country.

Tanzania Royal Tour film is the latest in a series of global television events, hosted by Peter Greenberg with President Samia Suluhu Hassan as his very special guide.

After the Covid-19 Pandemic, the road to recovery was precarious due to various measures taken by numerous countries to curb the pandemic by imposing travel restrictions. Meetings and events were cancelled and virtual technology was instrumental in facilitating meetings and events globally.

Various initiatives were devised to revamp tourism industry in Tanzania with little success but the launch of the Royal Tour Film was a timely intervention that accelerated the recovery of the industry.

Arusha International Conference Centre (AICC) is a flag bearer of the country’s MICE (Meetings, Incentives, Convention and Exhibitions) industry and immensely contributes directly and indirectly to socio economic development of Tanzania.

In the past two years since President Samia took an oath of office in March 2021 to date, AICC has hosted a total of 198 local meetings and 19 international meetings with 55,027 delegates. The Centre generated a net income of 30,953,159,074/-.

The above mentioned accomplishments were mainly achieved due to the successful implementation of the Centre’s strategic plan 2021/2022 coupled with President Samia’s political will to boost the country’s tourism industry including Conference Tourism.

Her choice to launch the Tanzania Royal Tour Film in Arusha and specifically at AICC was not a sheer coincidence and it speaks volume.

In her film inaugural speech she revealed that, previously the launch was planned for Dar es salaam but she deliberately directed that AICC was to be the launch venue due to the fact that Arusha was the country’s hub of tourism.

During the past two years, President Samia has officiated at a number of high profile meetings and events at both AICC Headquarters in Arusha and Julius Nyerere International Convention Centre.

AICC was established 45 years ago with the aim of enhancing Business Tourism in the country. The Centre’s core business, therefore, is the provision of quality conference services. It also operates the Dar es Salaam based Julius Nyerere International Convention Centre (JNICC).

Both centres are equipped with State of the art modern Audio Visual facilities that make it possible for hybrid, local and international meetings and events to be conducted successfully.

The Centre has hosted a number of high profile events like the Sullivan Summit (2008), AFDB meeting (2012), Rwanda and Burundi peace initiative meetings, CAF meeting and was a seat of UN International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda.

According to the World Travel and Tourism Council (WTTC), business travel accounted for 20 per cent of the global tourism expenditure in 2021. In that year, it was estimated that business travellers spent more than 740 billion US dollars worldwide.

In her October 20,2022 Publication, Ana Lopez stated that the Size of the global meetings industry amounted to roughly 920 million U.S dollars in 2019. As the next forecasts show, this market was expected to rise steadily over the following years after a backslide in 2020, reaching approximately 1.8 billion U.S dollars by 2030.

According to sources from the Ministry of Natural Resources and Tourism, Tanzania travel receipts almost doubled to USD 2,560.7 million in 2022 from USD 1,310.3 million in 2021, consistent with the rise in the number of tourist arrivals. Tanzania received 1,454,920 tourists in 2022, compared to 922,692 in 2021 and 616,291 in 2020.

In view of the above, Tanzania determined to tap the huge potential for development of Business Tourism by modernising its existing conference facilities and build new ones.

The Newly appointed AICC Managing Director Mr Ephraim Mafuru said that the Centre has a potential for growth to become the leading Conference destination in Africa.

Addressing journalists shortly after he arrived in Arusha, The Managing Director said with sound strategies and realistic targets it was possible to restore AICC’s former glory as a Centre of conference diplomacy in Africa.

Currently, AICC has set aside 21 acres in Arusha city for the construction of state of the art Mount Kilimanjaro International Convention Centre MKICC.

The project will be the country’s high profile investment designed to provide world class meeting services for national, regional and international events.

As Tanzania celebrates two years anniversary since President Dr Samia was sworn into the highest office in the land, AICC commends her valuable and timely contribution in enhancing Business Tourism in the country and is looking forward for a brighter future as the Centre is bracing to become the leading Conference destination in Africa.

AICC was established under the Public Corporations Act of 1969, by Presidential Order through Government Notice number115, published on 25 August, 1978.

The Centre is wholly owned by the government and operates under the purview of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and East African Cooperation through which it reports to the parliament.

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