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See, feel and explore: Travel Indaba 2019 kick starts
Meaningful experience, a unique blend of cultures and real value for money is what is promised as the Travel Indaba 2019 officially opens at the Inkosi Albert Luthuli International Convention Centre in Durban.

Over 22 African countries use the Travel Indaba to offer themselves to the world as the most diverse tourist attraction compared to the rest of the world. These countries include Angola, Botswana, the DRC, Lesotho, Madagascar, Malawi, Mauritius, Mozambique, Namibia, Reunion, Seychelles, Senegal, Swaziland, Tanzania, Zambia and Zimbabwe.

Cutting the ribbon
“Each year the Travel Indaba becomes bigger and better,” said Minister of Tourism Derek Hanekom.

Travel Indaba has generated 67 million international visits which were a 7 percent increase in 2018, contributing 8,5 percent to the African Gross Domestic Product (GDP). All this has created at least 6.7 percent jobs.

“Ethiopia has the fastest growing tourism industry sitting at 48,6 percent, we can learn a lot from them in order to achieve the 2030 goal. Kenya is constantly growing sitting at 37 percentage, reaching the 2 million mark for the first time.” “This is a good sign,” added Minister Hanekom.

Economic Development, Tourism and Environmental Affairs MEC Sihle Zikalala welcomed everyone to enjoy the prime Africa Indaba. “This is a platform to forge strategic partnerships, business relationships and networking.”

Exhibition walk-about
Minister of Tourism Derek Hanekom conducted a walkabout that stretched from ICC to Durban Exhibition Centre, Witnessing the diversity in art, food, travel and tourism. This deemed as medicine for every adrenalin and adventure seekers. Attendees were given the opportunity to see, feel and explore different tourist attractions displayed.

Economic Development, Tourism and Environmental Affairs MEC Sihle Zikalala said: “We want you to do business, do it well and come out enriched.”
 

Business Conversation
A conversation on business and leisure (Bleisure) kicked off the first business conversation at the Travel Indaba. With an ever-growing number of sub-Saharan African countries looking at tourism as a feasible option for revenue generation, Senior Research Analyst, Christele Chokossa conducted a presentation that showed how tourism has become a beneficial factor within the economy.

The presentation showcased statistics on tourism economic contribution in the Continent, the various trends that are currently shaping the future of travel, the benefits of country openness, how the economic performance attracts multinational hotel groups and how the internet is creating a revolution within travel and tourism.

One of the most beneficial factors for Tourism is the internet. “The internet is creating a revolution in travel and tourism. One thing we need to acknowledge is digital technology is transforming tourism business models,” said Chokossa. 

However, the three key drivers of tourism are lodging, transportation and attractions. Chokossa added that the fundamental points one can take from this conversation are Diversification Matters
Digital Will affects Business Models Forge Strategic Partnerships

“Tourism is expected to remain a key economic support for the Continent,” said Chokossa.
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