The return on investment for the Botswana Travel and Tourism Expo, now in its fourth year may be starting to show, as tourist arrivals this year have already surpassed 2 million.
This was said by Minister of Wildlife, Environment and Tourism, Tshekedi Khama at a press conference he held with both local and international media after the official opening of the BTTE on Tuesday morning. The visitors he said, consists of about 60 percent from the US market, 30 percent European market and the rest are from the rest of the world.
He said tourism plays a big role in the economy of the country, contributing largely to the country’s GDP and that it pivots itself mainly around wildlife, saying measures should therefore be put in place to ensure that wildlife is protected.
He said Botswana has proven herself to be a safe-haven for wildlife as indicated by the numbers of wildlife that migrate to the country on daily basis.
He cited the Seboba Nature and Recreational Park in Kasane as a place that tourists could visit for tourism purposes and a focal point for cultural activity in Kasane. However, he said that it was work in progress until the Kazungula Bridge was completed.
For his part, acting CEO of Botswana Tourism Organisation (BTO), Zibanani Hubona said the expo provided a platform for local and international operators to network and exchange ideas. Hubona explained how the global tourism market had grown and that in order for Botswana to stay relevant in the world, stronger linkages with the rest of the world were necessary and thus platforms like the expo were necessary.