Home Travel Zimbabwe tourist arrivals up 2.6 percent in 2014

Zimbabwe tourist arrivals up 2.6 percent in 2014

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Zimbabwe registered a 2.6 percent increase in tourist arrivals to 1.88 million last year from 1.83 million in 2013 on the back of increased arrivals from all source markets except Asia. tourist
The Zimbabwe Tourism Authority (ZTA) said Wednesday tourism receipts, however, marginally declined by three percent to 827 million U.S. dollars from 856 million dollars recorded in 2013.
“This to an extent reflects a slight decline in expenditure especially in the tourism facility by the same proportion,” the ZTA said.
The 2.6 percent growth in arrivals was also 0.7 percent below sub Saharan growth of 3.3 percent.
According to the ZTA, Europe remained Zimbabwe’s largest overseas tourist source market outside Africa, registering total arrivals of 137, 465 and a 7 percent increase from the previous year, followed by America which contributed 66,826 arrivals which was also an increase of 23 percent from the previous year.
Africa contributed the largest number of arrivals at 1. 6 million visitors to Zimbabwe last year, which was a two percent increase from 2013.
Visitors from Asia were 42, 798 although the figure was a 19 percent decline from 2013.
The Oceania contributed 26, 031 visitors, a 15 percent increase from the previous year while the Middle East region contributed the least number of arrivals at 6, 412 visitors, which was 108 percent jump from 2013.
Thus Zimbabwe’s total overseas arrivals stood at 279, 532 representing a 7 percent jump from 2013 while visitors from Africa were 1.6 million, representing a two percent increase from 2013.
In Africa, South Africa topped as the leading tourist source market for Zimbabwe accounting for 607,616 visitors while in America the United States led with 57,410 visitors.
Japan was the leading tourist source market in Asia with 18,443 visitors, followed by China with 12, 927 visitors.
In Europe, Britain was the major source market contributing 38, 606 followed by Germany with 24, 572 visitors.
Israel topped as the leading source market in Middle East with 6, 005 visitors while in the Oceania Australia topped with 18, 381 visitors.
The ZTA, meanwhile, bemoaned the discontinuation of direct flights to Harare by the Royal Dutch Airlines (KLM) and Egypt Air last year citing viability challenges.
“The discontinuation has dealt a blow on Zimbabwean tourism, especially as the country continues to battle with connectivity challenges with its major overseas markets,” the ZTA said.
The outbreak of the Ebola virus in West Africa since March 2014, the ZTA said, also affected tourism in Africa and Zimbabwe as overseas travellers see Africa as “one destination”.
“Victoria Falls was worst hit by cancellations after the outbreak since Victoria Falls is an add-on destination combined with other countries such as South Africa, Kenya, Botswana, Zambia and Namibia,” it said.
Zimbabwe, whose arrivals plunged significantly over the past decade due to negative publicity of the country by the Western media, has been gradually boosting its arrivals so that they reach and surpass the 1999 peak of 2.2 million visitors. Enditem

Source: Xinhua

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