The tourism industry plays not only a major role in creation of unemployment though it is rarely recognized, but the greatest pillar it stands is generation of revenue for any country. The more effective the sector is, the more it is likely to do well and blossom the other areas it is attached to. With the dynamics involved, policies and regulations should always be in adjustments to cater for the timely necessities to be met.
Tanzania’s Ministry of Natural Resources and Tourism has embarked on formulating a new policy that will see to it that this sector seriously works to increase the number of both international and domestic tourists, average number of nights spent per night by tourists, and average expenditure per tourist per day.
Deputy Minister Mr Ramo Makani underlined on the importance of the new policy that will ensure all players are well incorporated particularly the private sector while keenly observing the creation of business opportunities, investment on people and human capital, embracing technological advancements and improving competitiveness of the country’s tourism products.
According to the Five Years Development Plan 2016-2021 for the sector, tourism is anticipated to grow by 6.2 per cent then, raise the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) share up to 18.3 per cent and share of total export to 21.4 percent as well as employment by at least 12 per cent
The Deputy Minister remained optimistic though that the deliberations on Sustainable Tourism Development and ongoing stakeholders’ workshops on the review of the Tourism Policy was vital and will add much value to the achievement of the envisaged key targets for the sector.
However, the workshop raised an alarm on a number of bottlenecks that were likely to keep on affecting the sector even if the policy is reviewed mentioning some as multiplicity of taxes, ineffective Tourism Act of 2008, multiplicity of regulatory agencies and generally poor investment environment
A consultant from the University of Dar es Salaam Prof Raphael Mwalyosi advised for more funding to the organs tasked to promote tourism citing poor allocation of resources to the Tanzania Tourist Board (TTB) which in his view should be empowered financially to undertake its objectives effectively.
“In 2015 the country attracted 1,137,182 tourists who injected 1.9bn Us Dollars (about 4tln/-) but with more promotional strategies, open and stable policies and strong regulatory bodies the country was likely to garner remarkably from the sector,” he said.