Tourism exposition facing constraints
Government, through the Department of Tourism, has indicated that it will only be able to support 50 buyers out of the 120 that have expressed interest to participate in this year’s Malawi International Tourism Expo (Mite) due to budget constraints.
Malawi Tourism Council President, Oswald Bwemba, has confirmed the position further indicating that ten additional buyers may be partially sponsored or pay their own way.
“In comparison to last year, we are satisfied with the numbers that have expressed interest as there is an increase in the number of buyers and travel writers wishing to come and cover the event this year,” he said.
Bwemba said the council expects foreign buyers and travel writers to help raise Malawi’s profile as a tourist attraction.
“The publicity that will be generated and the inclusion of Malawi’s attraction sites in various tour packages is likely to boost international visitors to Malawi, thereby increasing our foreign exchange earnings,” Bwemba said.
Department of Tourism publicist, Sarah Njanji, said the department has been conducting exhibitor workshops to ensure that local operators are fully prepared ahead of the Expo to get more value from their participation.
She said the department is receiving a lot of enquiries and that it is using the workshops as a platform to provide the necessary information regarding the number of buyers that have been targeted.
Mangochi Tour i sm Association Chairperson, Victoria Kingstone, said the increase in the number of buyers is a welcome development as this is likely to promote competition.
The exposition is an annual event and is targeting all tourism stakeholders and key industry players. Registration is open on www. tourism.mw
Malawi hosted the first edition of the Expo from August 30 to September 1 2017, which saw about 25 buyers attending the event. This year, the event will be held from April 26 to 28 and has been christened Takulandirani.
The event aims at offering a platform for Malawi to showcase its tourism products as well as an opportunity for local, regional and international buyers to interface and discuss how best to package Malawi’s tourism products for increased product awareness and eventual returns.