In just 3 days time, the world will literally meet Zimbabwe when buyers, exhibitors and journalists from around the world attend the Sanganai/Hlanganani Tourism expo in Harare.This year has seen a marked growth of the Sanganai/Hlanganani Tourism expo since its inception as a small fair in Bulawayo 2008.
Â Exhibitors, buyers and investors to this yearâ€™s expo have come from different parts of the world such as Sudan, Brazil, Indonesia, Malaysia and Seychelles among others who are participating for the first time.
According to Zimbabwe Tourism Authority (ZTA) Chief Operating Officer, Mr Givemore Chidzidzi, the fair will soon be the best tourism showcase in Africa as seen by the increase in the number of non-hosted buyers and foreign exhibitors.
â€œ60 completely non hosted buyers and investors will be coming to Zimbabwe this year while 220 buyers are partially hosted by the Authority a clear testimony that the fair is now a force to reckon with.
Mr Chidzidzi added that this is a clear indication that Zimbabweâ€™s tourism is on the path to recovery.
For the past 2 years, the country used to host all the buyers and exhibitors but things have gone for the better with some investors and buyers coming on their own to attend Sanganai as well as going on pre-tours to sample the market.
ZTA Executive Director Destination Marketing, Ms Tesa Chikaponya said the industry has now started to realise the fruits of the expo as seen by new investors coming to invest in the country some of whom are partnering locals.
More than 200 international tourism buyers, journalists, investors, tour and safari operators are already in the country and have started visiting the Victoria Falls, Great Zimbabwe, Eastern Highlands and other places of interest.
They pledged to help in the marketing of the country as destination of choice in the world through their pamphlets, brochures and the writing of good stories.
Over 470 exhibitors and 320 buyers are expected at the expo.
This yearâ€™s fair will run under the theme â€˜Green Tourism, anchoring Economic Growth,â€™ which is in line with United Nations theme for the World Tourism Day, â€œTourism and Biodiversity.â€
The theme seeks to highlight the link between tourism and the sustainable use of the environment and natural resources.