Expo platform for tourism products

30 Nov 2023

The Botswana Travel and Tourism Expo (BTTE) has been lauded for providing a platform to promote diverse tourism products in Botswana.

Delivering a keynote address at the BTTE welcome reception in Kasane on Wednesday, acting Minister of Environment and Tourism, Ms Nnaniki Makwinja stated that Botswana’s tourism basket was diverse and included an array of tangible and non-tangible products and services.

She said the expo shone a spotlight on culture, hospitality,  travel, sport, food, song and dance and the Meetings, Incentives Conferences and Exhibitions (MICE) strategy.

Ms Makwinja said that the tourism industry contributed immensely to the country’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP) and was among Botswana’s top industries creating employment.

She said the tourism industry relied largely on the sustainable management of natural resources, hence commended service providers in the industry for doing an excellent job in that regard.

“We attribute the performance of the tourism sector to all of you service providers, who continue to make Botswana a destination of choice for tourists who visit our country to experience our unique tourism product that is diverse,” said Ms Makwinja.

She said Botswana prides itself with cultural diversity, pristine flora and fauna, captured so well by the listing of Okavango Delta as a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

Furthermore, Ms Makwinja highlighted that Botswana was a sanctuary to wildlife being a model wildlife conservation and community involvement in natural resource conservation.

She said many sectors of the economy, including tourism were threatened by the effects of climate change, which had negatively impacted food security, water supply and the way of life.

This, she said, called for action to make changes and adapt to the changes occurring due to climate change.

“We should all be committed to taking a lead in practicing sustainable tourism by reducing carbon footprint to mitigate the effects of climate change,” said Ms Makwinja.

Botswana Tourism Organisation (BTO) Interim Board chairperson, Ms Wincey Ramaphoi stated that the expo was a platform for local tourism operators to promote their products, network and share ideas with a larger audience.

She said the expo also intended to highlight the contribution of the tourism industry in the economy and enable local operators to link up with their global counterparts.

Ms Ramaphoi stated that it was imperative for businesses to learn to adapt post COVID-19 and come up with innovative and effective strategies that would sustain their businesses at all times.

Chobe District Council chairperson, Mr Chimney Mululwani said BTTE was a celebration of Botswana’s rich cultural heritage, the diverse landscapes and the warm hospitality that defined Batswana.

The event, he said, offered an opportunity for forging connections, and building a sense of unity within the travel and tourism industry.

Mr Mululwani emphasised the need to commit to sustainable practices, to preserve the natural wonders and strive for the uplifting of communities living within these natural resources. Ends

Source : BOPA

Author : Portia Ikgopoleng

Location : Kasane

Event : Welcome reception

Date : 30 Nov 2023