Tourism stakeholders have been commended for their extensive and co-ordinated efforts made since last year in marketing Zimbabwe and boosting tourist arrivals in the country.
TheÂ commendation has been made by Tourism and Hospitality Industry MinisterÂ Cde. Walter Mzembi, following the fulfillment of the goals set by the Inter-ministerial Taskforce on Tourism.
The three goals included increasing tourist arrivals in the country, attracting a team participating in the World Cup to the country and to connect Zimbabweans to the soccer event.
Cde Mzembi said within a space of a year the sector has made great strides in achieving all its set goals due to concerted stakeholder participation, noting the rapid growth of the Zimbabwean brand as a tourist destination.
â€œZTA has done great work in boosting arrivals into the country since last year. Our brand, â€˜Zimbabweâ€™ is now ranked as the third fastest growing tourism economy by GDP contribution only second to Qatar and Lebanon.
It is also projected to be the second fastest growing tourism economy growing at an annualised rate of 8.2% in the next decade after China,â€ said Minister Mzembi.
Cde Mzembi added thatÂ even the regional and international communities are appreciating developments in the local tourism industry as seen by Zimbabweâ€™s election to the United Nations World Tourism Organisation Executive Council and the election to chair to the Regional Tourism Organisation of Southern Africa.
During a recent press conference, Brazilian Ambassador to Zimbabwe Mr. Raul De Taurnay acknowledged that the countryâ€™s tourist authorities had managed to win the Samba boys through extensive marketing efforts.
While tourist authorities locally and regionally revised downwards their projectionsÂ for the number of tourists expected during theÂ World Cup, the trip by the Brazilian soccerÂ team has renewed marketing initiatives of the sector locally