NAIROBI (Xinhua) --
Africa’s tourism industry is steadily attracting
regional and international investment, and investment returns in
the sector is among the highest in the world, the World Bank
(WB) said in a new report on Thursday.
projects that Africa’s tourism industry is set to spur more
economic growth for the continent.
president for Africa Makhtar Diop said Africa’s private
companies are increasingly attracting regional and international
investment and the returns on investing in the continent are
among the highest in the globe.
alliance with the private sector, governments must also do
their part to create better transport, electricity,
infrastructure, and other key services to develop tourism
for more broad-based growth and improved livelihoods,” Diop
The WB notes
the global hotel chains are expanding across Africa, recognizing
investment potential and committing millions of dollars in new
projects over the next few years to meet increased demand from
both international tourists and the continent’s own fast-growing
comes a week after Europe’s oldest luxury hotel group, Kempinski
Hotels, announced plans to expand its portfolio of luxury hotels
Hotels CEO Reto Wittwer told journalists in Nairobi on Sept. 26
that the global brand which has two new properties opened in
Kenya in 2013 and will add five more hotels to its African
portfolio in the next year.
continue our development strategy throughout the continent
over the next few years, partnering with key players in
Africa to secure the best locations for our luxury
properties,” he said.
a worldwide fascination with this region and we believe in
the strength of places like Kenya as a destination,” Wittwer.
African countries are currently a prized destination for
international hotel brands and the trend will continue thanks to
a friendly investment climate and competitiveness.
A number of
multinational investors have increased their investors in the
hotel industry by setting up several operations in sub Sahara
Africa, Kenya in particular.
after the company’s success expanding into the Middle East and
China over the past 20 years, Kempinski expects its growing
portfolio in key destinations across the African continent to
become a major source of revenue for the company, as well as
provide new sources for talent and talent development across the
the report, Harnessing Tourism for Growth and Improved
Livelihoods, Africa’s tourism is set to accelerate economic
growth, create new employment and is expected to outpace other
regions for new tourism investment.
cites successful examples of countries including Kenya, Cape
Verde, Mauritius, Namibia, Rwanda, South Africa, Tanzania and
others, who have simplified their tourism policies creating
conducive investment climate for tourism growth.
statistics from the WB, Africa attracted 33.8 million visitors
in 2012, up from a low 6.7 million visitors in 1990, and its
receipts from tourism for the same year amounted to over 36
billion U.S. dollars, or 2.8 percent of the region’s GDP.
in 2011 contributed 9.1 percent to world GDP, 5. 9 percent of
worldwide exports and 4.5 percent of global investment. Africa’s
tourism revenues are rising fast and are set to contribute more
and more to world activity.
Hannah Messerli, co-author of the report, although Africa’s
tourism potential has largely gone untapped to date, it can now
take steps to close the gap with other regions.
continent’s abundant natural and cultural resources, as well
as business activity, the fundamentals are in place for
tourism growth,” said Messerli who is also senior private
sector development specialist in WB’s Africa Region.
strategies and examples presented in this report, Africa can
claim its fair share of world tourism,” the specialist
shows that tourism which accounted directly or indirectly for
one in every 20 jobs in Sub Saharan Africa in 2011 is one of the
few industries on the continent in which women are well
represented as employees and managers.
African countries looking to sustain and increase growth,
tourism can be harnessed through joint public and private
sector efforts to achieve growth, wealth creation and shared
prosperity,” said Gaiv Tata, Director of Financial and
Private Sector Development for the WB in Africa.
suggests that 33 of Sub Saharan Africa’s 48 countries currently
have the capacity for tourism success through establishing
strong political support for developing the industry and
attracting increased private investment to help finance and
This gives new
impetus to the continent’s development progress by leveraging
tourism in pursuit of lasting poverty alleviation and
significantly more jobs and opportunity for all Africans.
identifies policies and institutional approaches to improve the
tourism competitiveness of African countries so they can move up
explains the opportunities and challenges that tourism offers
and suggests tourism competitiveness strategies based on tourism
economic success stories from across the world.
analysis of 24 tourism case studies from around the world, the
report is a valuable and timely contribution to efforts to build
a framework for sustainable tourism in Africa.