Republic of Zimbabwe Vice-President Joice Mujuru with Indian Vice-President Mohd Hamid Ansari. The two officials held discussions in New Delhi. Both countries are seeking to strengthen economic and political ties., a photo by Pan-African News Wire File Photos on Flickr.
Mujuru launches Zim tourism brand in India
Thursday, 22 March 2012 00:00
Walter Muchinguri in New Delhi
Vice President Joice Mujuru yesterday launched the country’s national tourism brand “A World of Wonders” at Lalit Hotel in central Delhi during a well-attended Zimbabwe Day dinner.
The tourism brand is underpinned by Zimbabwe’s seven wonders — its people and culture, a rich history and heritage, the majestic Victoria Falls, the Great Zimbabwe Ruins, wildlife and nature, the mystique of the Eastern Highlands and the Kariba Dam and the mighty Zambezi River.
Vice President Mujuru said that the launch of the brand in India was in recognition of the country’s importance as a source market that is set to grow and realise its full potential once it has been introduced and advertised.
“Unveiling our destination in this growing economy will enable us to create synergies and enhance Zimbabwe’s status as a prime tourist destination.
“Zimbabwe and India continue to enjoy bi-lateral relations that date back to the liberation struggle and, as such, it is prudent that we unveil this destination to you,” she said.
She added that Zimbabwe’s presence at the just-ended Outbound Travel Mart/Travel and Tourism Fair had afforded the country the rarest of opportunities to learn from a great tourist destination such as India and to network and attract tourists to Zimbabwe.
Vice President Mujuru said that the issue of access to Zimbabwe by air from India had recently been resolved through the coming in of Emirates which is now flying between Harare and Dubai three times a week.
“I am also pleased to inform you that Lufthansa Airlines will be making a comeback to Zimbabwe albeit through a code sharing arrangement with South African and Ethiopian Airlines. These international airlines have a wide global network that will make Zimbabwe accessible,” she said.
The opening up of the tourism market comes as Zimbabwe has started benefiting from a spirited campaign to re-engage with the international community through image building and destination marketing.
The efforts have seen the tourism sector registering close to 2,5 million visitors last year while an estimated 2,75 million visitors are expected by the end of 2012.
The country’s efforts also received a major boost after it won the bid to co-host the United Nations World Tourism Organisation General Assembly with Zambia next year.
Vice President Mujuru said that the overall objective was to see Zimbabwe regain its position as one of the leading world-class tourist destinations.
“We are encouraged by the recent World Travel and Tourism Council report which stated that Zimbabwe is among the three destinations that registered significant tourism growth together with Qatar and Lebanon,” she said.
Meanwhile, VP Mujuru and her delegation left New Delhi and are now in Bangalore, which is one of the most prominent industrial hubs in India.
During the visit the delegation will tour a number of companies mostly those involved in producing irrigation equipment and technology transfer.
She is also expected to travel to another industrial and tourism hub, Pune, before winding up her visit to India.