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‘Domestic tourism can anchor economic growth’

Domestic tourism can play an important role in Zimbabwe’s economic growth and prosperity, pursuant to the attainment of a US$5 billion industry by 2025, Deputy Minister of Tourism and Hospitality Industry Tongai Mnangagwa has said.

In a statement yesterday, deputy Minister Mnangagwa said the domestic tourism sub-sector is an economic enabler that can see the creation of jobs both directly and indirectly, as well as the developing of necessary infrastructure.

He said the growth of domestic tourism would ultimately aid to the attainment of Vision 2030.

“Domestic tourism can play a significant role in stimulating economic growth in several ways as Domestic tourists spend money on various goods and services such as accommodation, transportation, meals, shopping, and entertainment. This spending directly contributes to the local economy, generating revenue for businesses and supporting jobs.

“The more domestic tourists there are, the more money is circulated within the country, leading to increased economic activity.

“The tourism industry is labour-intensive, requiring a wide range of services such as hotel staff, tour guides, restaurant workers, transportation providers, and more. As domestic tourism grows, the demand for these services increases, leading to job creation in both direct and indirect sectors. This helps reduce unemployment rates and provides income opportunities for local residents,” he said.

The deputy Minister said Minister Barbara Rwodzi is leading by example and at the forefront of championing domestic tourism in the country.

Since assuming the Ministerial role in the second Cabinet of the Second Republic, Minister Rwodzi has been spearheading various initiatives such as ZIMBHO, that have led to a boost in the country’s tourism sector.

“Also to accommodate the influx of domestic tourists, destinations often require infrastructure development. This includes the construction of new hotels, resorts, restaurants, transportation facilities, and recreational facilities like what my Minister Hon Rwodzi is working on developing Matopos to world class standards.

“These investments not only enhance the tourism experience but also contribute to the overall development of the region, creating more job opportunities and improving the quality of life for residents,” he said.

“We have also experienced Domestic tourism providing opportunities for small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) to thrive. Local businesses such as boutique hotels, family-run restaurants, handicraft shops, and local tour operators benefit from increased tourist traffic. This allows them to expand their operations, generate more revenue, and contribute to the local economy.”

Deputy Minister Mnangagwa said the ministry was working on making tourism Zimbabwe’s second biggest revenue earner.

This, he said, would surely be achieved under President Mnangagwa’s astute leadership.

“As we work towards a US$5 billion Zimbabwean tourism economy, domestic tourism helps generate tax revenue for the Government through various means, including accommodation taxes, sales taxes, and transportation taxes. This revenue can be reinvested in public infrastructure, healthcare, education, and other essential services, contributing to overall economic development.

“Over-reliance on a single industry can make an economy vulnerable to external shocks. Domestic tourism provides an opportunity to diversify the economy by developing the tourism sector alongside other industries. By promoting domestic tourism, countries can reduce their dependence on international tourism and create a more resilient and sustainable economy.

“To maximise the economic benefits of domestic tourism, my ministry and Zimbabwe Tourism Authority has implemented effective marketing campaigns such as ZIMBHO, improve infrastructure through our Development arm Mosi Development Company, provide training for tourism-related businesses, and create supportive policies and regulations and all this is being Championed by my principals namely HE the President Dr E.D Mnangagwa through his visionary leadership, the First Lady Amai Auxillia Mnangagwa through various programs like the Gastronomy initiative which has earned her international recognition and awards in Europe and my boss Hon Barbra Rwodzi who is our captain on the tourism ship as we sail towards achieving US$5 billion and becoming number two as the revenue earner for our Government,” he said.

Herald

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