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Tanzania tourism could create more growth and jobs: World Bank

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ZANZIBAR Tanzania (Xinhua) – Zanzibar Stone Town museum in Tanzania. The Stone Town, which used to be a trading center in East Africa, is a seashore city with winding alleys, bustling bazaars, mosques and grand Arab houses. Most of the houses are well preserved and constructions built in the 19th century still can be seen in the town. The harmonious combination of different cultures attract lots of tourists every year. The Stone Town was listed by the UNESCO in 2000 as a world cultural heritage site. XINHUA PHOTO – XU SUHUI

DAR ES SALAAM Tanzania (Xinhua) — The World bank has suggested that the tourism industry in Tanzania could grow and create more high-paying jobs and closer linkages with businesses and local communities.

In its latest Tanzania Economic Update, the World Bank explores the current benefits of tourism and the benefits it could provide if developed and managed appropriately.
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“Tanzania is poised to reach middle-income status, and tourism can be leveraged to promote faster economic growth, additional productive jobs, more fiscal revenues and additional foreign exchange earnings,” he said.

To help the country reach its goal to increase tourism revenue eightfold by 2025, the report outlines three pillars to address current tourism challenges.

The first pillar is diversification of tourism activities from the current emphasis on high-end tourism in the north circuits around Arusha and Zanzibar where up to 90 percent of tourism activities are currently concentrated.

The report recommends realizing other opportunities, especially in southern Tanzania and developing attractions and activities that cater to tourists on more modest travel budgets, including more local and regional visitors.

The second pillar is integration of local communities and small operators into tourism activities through benefit-sharing processes.

Tanzania’s tourism industry is not creating enough high-value, productive jobs for local workers and many resorts rely on imported materials, equipment and food.

Proactive policies, developed jointly by the public and private sectors, are needed to address these two areas with the goal of enhancing local skills and quality to meet the standards of this highly competitive industry, the report said.The third pillar is improvement in the quality of governance, which involves the implementation of a fair, business-friendly taxation system and the development of transparent redistribution mechanisms, including to local stakeholders.È

“There is no doubt Tanzania is in a good place with tourism and yet could do considerably better,” said Philippe Dongier, World Bank’s country director for Tanzania, Burundi and Uganda.“Tanzania has abundant natural tourism attractions and is well recognized internationally,” he said.He said the east African country received one million visitors in 2013, bringing in 1.5 billion U.S. dollars in foreign exchange earnings, which was remarkable by any account.

There was potential for further growth as also emphasized by the Tanzanian government, Dongier said, adding that some of the needed reforms were quite urgent as the status quo could be costly for the country. Tourism directly employs close to half a million Tanzanians and contributes to almost 20 per cent of total exports.

It represents approximately 3.4 per cent of Tanzania’s total GDP but the level could reach an estimated 10 per cent considering its indirect impacts on other areas such as agriculture and transportation.

“This target is indeed achievable but only if there is a change in policies and mindsets among all stakeholders,” said Jacques Morisset, World Bank’s lead economist for Tanzania and author of the report.

“Tanzania is poised to reach middle-income status, and tourism can be leveraged to promote faster economic growth, additional productive jobs, more fiscal revenues and additional foreign exchange earnings,” he said.

To help the country reach its goal to increase tourism revenue eightfold by 2025, the report outlines three pillars to address current tourism challenges.

The first pillar is diversification of tourism activities from the current emphasis on high-end tourism in the north circuits around Arusha and Zanzibar where up to 90 percent of tourism activities are currently concentrated.

The report recommends realizing other opportunities, especially in southern Tanzania and developing attractions and activities that cater to tourists on more modest travel budgets, including more local and regional visitors.

The second pillar is integration of local communities and small operators into tourism activities through benefit-sharing processes.

Tanzania’s tourism industry is not creating enough high-value, productive jobs for local workers and many resorts rely on imported materials, equipment and food.

Proactive policies, developed jointly by the public and private sectors, are needed to address these two areas with the goal of enhancing local skills and quality to meet the standards of this highly competitive industry, the report said.

The third pillar is improvement in the quality of governance, which involves the implementation of a fair, business-friendly taxation system and the development of transparent redistribution mechanisms, including to local stakeholders.

Source: http://www.coastweek.com/3805-Tourism-could-create-more-growth-and-jobs-for-Tanzania-World-Bank.htm

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