Time to realise tourism dream

TOURISM is one of main sectors that contribute much to the government coffers, especially in foreign currencies.

The Sixth Phase Government has done a commendable job in promoting tourism through improvement of infrastructure in different national parks, Ngorongoro Conservation Area (NCA), nature reserve forests as well as in other tourism attractions such as museums.

Other plans have been promoting tourism by marketing the attractions to the outer world by using high commissions’ officials and other stakeholders.

Tourism could be referred as the act and process of spending time away from home in pursuit of recreation, relaxation and pleasure, while making use of the commercial provision of services.

As such, tourism is a product of modern social arrangements, beginning in western Europe in the 17th century, although it has antecedents in classical antiquity.

Tanzania now stands central to such market, attracting huge number of tourists from Africa and out of the continent as well.

The government now has outlined critical measures to support endeavours of securing an income of 6 billion US dollars (around 14tri/-) from five million tourists by the year 2025, key being expanding more products in the sector.

Natural Resources and Tourism Minister Ms Angellah Kairuki was quoted yesterday by pointing at the products geared for massive promotion to hit the mark as beach, cruise ship and MICE (Meetings, Incentives, Conferences and Event management) tourism.

Tourism is distinguished from exploration in that tourists follow a beaten path, benefit from established systems of provision and as befits pleasure-seekers, are generally insulated from difficulty, danger and embarrassment.

However, it overlaps with other activities, interests and processes, including, for example, pilgrimage. This gives rise to shared categories, such as business tourism, sports tourism and medical tourism – international travel undertaken for the purpose of receiving medical care.

In the latter, the Government of Tanzania has successfully established the country as one of the best in East Africa and surrounding blocks, due to great improvement of the health centres, including introduction of specialised services like surgeries that are not available in hospitals in other countries.

The Third Five-Year Development Plan (FYDP III of 2020/2021 to 2025/2026) and the ruling party CCM Election Manifesto 2020-2025 have set the target for the country to notch an income of 6 billion US dollars (about 14tri/-) from five million tourists come 2025.

The government’s commitment is to ensure the tourism sector continues to record a progressive growth by ensuring the number of tourists entering the country increases. Major initiatives taken by the government to promote the country’s tourism are quite vivid and despite devastating impacts of Covid-19, Tanzania’s tourism growth has been progressing well.

The achievements have enabled Tanzania’s tourism sector to contribute 25 per cent of all Foreign Direct Investments (FDIs) and 17.5 per cent of the Gross Domestic Product (GDP), demonstrating significant contribution in the economy of the country.

We have seen how President Samia Suluhu Hassan is taking the lead role, whereby she has participated in the ‘Tanzania Royal Tour’ documentary and a special film known as ‘Unforgettable Tanzania Presidential Tour’ that was recorded recently in collaboration with famous Chinese Actor Jin Dong.

There is no reason to hinder the country achieve its dreams of attracting the said number of tourists and respective income. All stakeholders should join hands for the cause.

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