Tanzania Tourism Revenues to Expand in 2009

According to reports by Reuters earlier this year, the Tanzania tourism sector is expected to generate $1.35 billion in revenue next year as a result of its aggressive international marketing campaigns.

Tanzania is well-known for its relative political stability within the region and, as such, it is expected that the tourism industry will continue to grow over the next few years.

The revenue that is generated by the tourism sector in Tanzania has continued to grow over the last few years and, by the end of the 2008 calendar year, it is expected to have generated between $1.1 billion and $1.2 billion.

In addition to the growth in the revenue that the tourism sector has experienced in the past few years, the number of tourists coming to Tanzania has also grown and is expected to reach approximately 750,000 for 2008, which is an increase from the total of 719,030 who visited the country in 2007.

Earlier this year, Peter Mwenguo, the managing director of Tanzanian Tourist Board, revealed that the goal for 2009 is for the country to receive 950,000 tourists, which is in line with the overall objective to attract at least 1 million annual tourists by 2010.

“For 2009, we should try every effort to reach 950,000 visitors [and] for revenue it will be in the range of $1.35 billion,” said Mr. Mwenguo in an interview with Reuters earlier this year.

“[For 2008] our target is to receive 750,000 tourists, but it might go up to 800,000,” Mr. Mwenguo continued, “In terms of revenue, we are projecting about $1.1 billion to $1.2 billion.”

In order to attract these additional tourists, promotional efforts will continue in order to effectively market the country’s various tourist attractions, which include national parks and animal reserve centers such as the Serengeti in the north and the Selous in the southeast.

In addition to these sites, Tanzania also lays claim to the highest mountain in Africa, Mount Kilimanjaro, as well as its famous beaches and diving activities along its eastern coastline and on the semi-autonomous archipelago of Zanzibar.

However, one of the most unique tourist attractions to the country is the migration of the wildebeest between Tanzania and Kenya.

At the start of 2008, tourism in the country was slowed down due to post-election violence that erupted in neighboring Kenya.

“There were a few cancellations,” Mr. Mwenguo explained, “because some of our tourists come to Tanzania via Nairobi, so some people were scared to come to Tanzania.”

According to research analysts with one of the leading market research and information analysis companies, RNCOS, the tourism sector has since regained some of its strength and this pattern of growth will likely continue in the coming years.

“Favorable conditions in Tanzania are leading to a growth in the tourism sector,” said one analyst, “and the growth is expected to continue in near future too.”