By Simon Shabangu | 2020-02-27
Eswatini and neighbouring South Africa are looking to collaborate in improving tourism as opposed to competing within the sector.
This was revealed by Minister of Tourism and Environmental Affairs Moses Vilakati after his meeting with South African Minister of Tourism Mmamoloko Kubayi-Ngubane.
The ministers met on the side-lines of the Meetings Africa conference, which took place in Sandton on Tuesday and yesterday.
He said the main objective was to package the products and promote the countries as a package since they were now promoting tourism at continental level.
“We are yet to finalise our talks but the bottom line is that we have agreed to work more together because we have different things to offer, especially to our international clients
“For instance, as Eswatini our strong point is culture, the beautiful scenery as well as the wildlife experience where we have an advantage of smaller nature reserves, which makes it easy to be able to see the big five within a short space of time,” he said.
Coming to the Africa Meetings, the minister said it was important for Eswatini to partake at this show in order to scout for opportunities where the country can participate in.
He said this involved collaborations for the use of the under construction International Convention Centre and Five Star Hotel (ICCFISH) Project in Ezulwini.
The minister said there needed to be events and activities happening in that structure once the convention centre was complete next year.
“We want that ICC to be a hive of activity, hence it is critical that we meet other players in the same field since events and meetings are another way of tourist attraction,” he said.
“The minister said taking part was also an opportunity to market the calendar of events, which assists in attracting more tourists to the country.
“We want to increase the numbers of tourists to two million as stipulated in the country’s roadmap. This meeting is one of the strategies we want to use to increase tourists from the 1.3 million to the two million arrivals per year target,” he said.
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