Senior Business Journalist
There is an urgent need to triple tourism growth from the current 4.5% contribution to gross domestic product to achieve the goal of a $5 billion tourism economy by 2025, the Cabinet said.
Following the report on tourism accounting findings and policy implications presented to Cabinet on Tuesday, it was decided that government agencies involved in the collection of tourism statistics would be strengthened through the use of digital platforms and the collaboration.
In line with the National Development Strategy, (NDS 1 2021-2025), the Government is committed to developing the Tourism Satellite Account (TSA) to improve the accounting of tourism sector performance.
A technical working group led by the Zimbabwe National Statistics Agency (Zimstat) has produced the TSA, an internationally adopted statistical tool to measure the contribution of tourism to gross domestic product (GDP), trade and tourism. employment in an economy.
Furthermore, the tool is expected to help policy makers formulate evidence-based policies for a sustainable and resilient tourism industry post Covid-19 for the benefit of stakeholders, government and communities.
In a post-Cabinet briefing on Tuesday, the Minister for Information and Communications Technology, Posts and Communications, Jenfan Muswere, said: “The nation is advised that the main findings of the TSA are as follows: .5 percent) to GDP.
“There is a need to triple the growth of the sector to achieve the goal of a $5 billion tourism economy by 2025.”
Minister Muswere said the findings further revealed that the tourism sector directly employed 99,141 people in 2018, domestic tourism contributed USD 765,724,073 compared to USD 1,198,868,807 for inbound tourism expenditure and that it should be supported.
The sector embarked on an aggressive domestic tourism marketing campaign after the launch of the ZimBho campaign in 2020, which helped improve domestic travel.
The recovery is enhanced by better accessibility of tourism products and connectivity of destination routes in terms of national and international transport.
To spur a quick recovery, the government has also introduced incentives such as domestic tourism value-added tax exemption and duty waiver facility.
These are supposed to contribute to improving access to tourism products and services by the internal market through prolonged price reductions.
The Cabinet said that collaboration between government agencies involved in the collection of tourism statistics will be enhanced through the use of digital platforms and that collaboration will be enhanced between the Tourism Authority of Zimbabwe, the Department of Immigration and other state actors.
Regarding the country’s participation in Expo Dubai, Minister Muswere said that the overall objectives had been achieved through the main exhibition and the complementary events.
“Feedback indicates that the overall objectives were achieved through the main exhibition and the side events. However, key stakeholders are undertaking an assessment of the country’s participation in the Expo.
“In relation to the Invest, Trade and Visit Zimbabwe campaign, many inquiries have been received during the period.
“A number of joint venture agreements were signed during the Expo.”
Zimbabwe was one of 192 countries that participated in Expo 2020 Dubai, where it showcased its unique trade and investment opportunities, distinct cultural heritage, socio-economic activities such as mining mining, tourism, agriculture, health, education, arts and culture among others.
The country was also promoting the engagement and re-engagement agenda and unpacking the country’s Vision 2030.