Kenya has announced plans to increase its earnings from tourism activities.
The government of Kenya has said that it was planning to raise as much as KES100bn from tourism related activities this year. Tourism minister, Dan Mwazo, said that the nation was planning to promote itself as an important tourist destination and has planned aggressive marketing campaigns to boost its stature on the tourism world map. The minister said that the nation had earned KES98bn from tourism last year, and is now planning to increase the inflow to KES100bn this year.
The statement from the minister has come as a much-needed boost to Kenya’s tourism sector, which was recently affected by acts of terrorism that had created an impression that it was unsafe for tourists.
The minister said, ‘We have successfully marketed Kenya as the best tourist destination in the world, but security issues and poor road network threaten to reverse the gains. We intend to venture into other potential markets. Over reliance on the traditional markets will not increase tourism revenue.’ He also said that the nation’s tourism department would attract more tourists from traditional markets and increase marketing of the nation’s forest reserves. Of the 59 reserves in the nation, the government is actively marketing only five, the minister said. He also said that the government was making plans to diversify its tourism offerings.
Kenya is known for its wildlife that attracts tourists to its forests and grasslands. Home to lions, leopards and hyenas, the Masai Mara national reserve witnesses the yearly migration of wildebeests from the Serengeti plains in Tanzania, to Kenya via the Mara River. The migration is a spectacular event that has been popular with tourists who mostly come to Kenya from the US, UK Germany and France.
In a related development, Kenyan scientists have called upon their government to tap the potential of the nation’s prehistoric fossils to boost the tourism industry.
The nation has become famous for the discovery of Turkana boy, a nearly complete skeleton of a hominid who died in the early Pleistocene era. It is claimed to be the most complete skeleton of our human ancestors so far discovered.