By Staff Reporter
The Zimbabwe Tourism Authority (ZTA) has opened an office in China as part of its drive to increase the number of visitors travelling from that region to the country.
“This initiative comes at an opportune time when Zimbabwe is really looking at intensifying its marketing efforts in major source markets like China, which is in line with the Vision 2030: National Tourism Recovery and Growth Strategy. This tourism project illustrates efforts that will go a long towards doubling tourists to Zimbabwe from China in the near future,” Environment, Tourism and Hospitality Industry minister Priscah Mupfumira said.
Chinese visitors to Zimbabwe have grown from 14 407 arrivals recorded in 2017 to 19 428 last year.
ZTA acting chief executive Rita Likukuma said the project would see some 340 Chinese tourists travel to Zimbabwe today as part of a three-country tour, which will include Djibouti and Tanzania.
“The significance of that speaks to the volumes of tourists that we will be getting out of China. Already, we are having the inaugural flight which is a three country visit. Over 340 delegates will be coming as tourists to sample Zimbabwe and to dispel some of the fears they may have about Zimbabwe and Africa,” she said.
“It is important that the friendly, warm and cultured people of Zimbabwe meet and give them a very memorable experience.”
The trip marks the commencement of a five-year plan, which will see over 10 000 tourists visiting Zimbabwe from China following the signing of a memorandum of understanding between the Tourism and Hospitality Industry ministry and Touchroad International Holdings Group in China during President Emmerson Mnangagwa’s inaugural State visit to that country in May last year.
“The people are very excited to go to Zimbabwe. We have done a lot of work in preparing for this trip. We have taken out time looking for all the information about the culture the history of Zimbabwe,” Touchroad International chief executive He Liehui said.