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Africa turns focus on India’s travel market

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KAHINI CHAKRABORTYDurban

Recognising India as an emerging and potential market, African countries namely Namibia, Zambia, Botswana, Mozambique have shown keen interest in attracting travellers from India. Apart from these, destinations like Kenya, Tanzania and Zimbabwe have already established their presence in the market. Even though the major source markets for these Southern African Development Community (SADC) countries are Europe, US, Germany, these destinations are now looking at having India too on the top lists of their source markets.

Speaking to Express TravelWorld, Victor Inambwae, general manager, Tourism Council of Zambia said, “Our culture is our unique selling point. We have almost 74 tribes and organise tribal festivals on a monthly basis. Zambia is the only country which has never had any political turmoil and it is this peaceful nature of the country which attracts many visitors. Indians are the second largest race in the country and we acknowledge that we have not been aggressively marketing the destination in the Indian market. Although our source markets have been the US, Canada, Europe markets, we are now looking at aggressively promoting ourselves in India. These promotions would be through joint collaborations with the tourism board. With our promotional strategies we aim to attract 1.5 million tourists by 2015.”

Nicolae Tambrescu, manager-regional, domestic operations and marketing, Namibia Tourism Board also boasted of the destination’s cultural diversity- tribes, heritage, forts, castles, etc. He added, “Namibia is an adventure destination. We do have had a few Indians visiting the country, but our source markets comprise of Europe, Germany, Italy and Portugal. We see India as one of the major source markets in the future and we are looking at reaching out to the market through organising trade programmes to promote Namibia. We aim to attract 1.5 million tourists in the coming years. We would continue positioning our destination as a boutique destination with virgin nature.”

The other SADC countries include Swaziland, Lesotho, Angola, Malawi, Mauritius, Seychelles, Madagascar and Reunion.

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