A deal clinched between the Zimbabwe Tourism Authority (ZTA) and China’s multinational company, Touchroad International (TI) entailing flying 10 000 delegates into Zimbabwe this year, will begin implementation next month, signalling a massive step to boost arrivals from this source market.

In an interview with ZBC News, ZTA Acting Chief Executive Officer, Mrs Rita Likukuma noted that the delegation comprising of tour operators, media practitioners and business executives will fly into the country on 10 May and will explore opportunities as well as package the destination for further marketing.

“The partnership with TI seeks to promote awareness on the Zimbabwean destination, to be achieved through aggressive marketing and packaging of various products within the tourism sector,” she said.

Despite Zimbabwe recording positive trends of Chinese visitors over the last decade, the figures have remained below 20 000 visitors, a major worry for authorities considering the deep pool of Chinese visitors who travel globally, estimated close to 120 million annually.

As part of the broader package to improve its attractiveness, Zimbabwe relaxed the Chinese visa to category ‘B’ where delegates can process their document on landing, a condition widely expected to boost travel to Zimbabwe from China.