Optimism and uncertainty around Zimbabwe tourism future

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Zimbabwe has a democratically elected president in Emmerson Mnangagwa following the rejection of an opposition appeal to annul the vote by the nation’s high court and now the nation can look to the future, albeit it with scepticism as much as optimism.

The restoration of both visitor and investor confidence in the nation are of paramount importance to Mnangagwa and the Zanu-PF party, a key tenet of this is tackling the liquidity and inflation crisis’ currently affecting the nation, the latter of which currently rests 348 percent.

Mnangagwa to date however may be succeeding in these aims. The Zimbabwe Investment Authority approved investment projects worth more than $1bn in the first quarter of 2018 alone according to reports, with the chance that in 2018 net foreign direct investment into Zimbabwe could surpass $500m for the first time since 2014 being of particular note.

If the country is to make the most of this reportedly increasing investment confidence then its tourism offering must be bolstered according to a global hospitality think tank.

The visibility of urban centres and the numerous leisure facilities within them must be harnessed as part of an overall package reported the hospital- ity firm, HVS Africa which ran the consultation.

“Tourism policies and infrastructure can create massive opportunities for an economy. Not only through job creation and direct/indirect income from tourism activities but also creating opportunity for interaction and business avenues,” said HVS associate director Rishabh Thapar.

Mnangagwa has already travelled extensively touting the message that Zimbabwe is open for business and for the wider world, whether he and his government can make good on these promises will go a long way to deciding the future of the nation.

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