JOHANNESBURG, Wednesday, 1 April 2020 –COVID-19 uncertainties have had a severe impact on the global travel and tourism industry, and we are still counting. This will, however, not last forever because global experts and our governments are working around the clock to find the best solutions for this pandemic and its impact.
The UNWTO and many other organisations in our industry, as well as destinations, have launched numerous innovative initiatives to help us all sharpen our focus on post-COVID-19 opportunities. Among these is the UNWTO’s Healing Solutions Tourism Challenge. This Challenge calls on entrepreneurs, start-ups, the youth and innovators across the globe to come up with most disruptive solutions to mitigate against the impact of COVID-19 on our people, our prosperity and our destinations. Africa Tourism Partners takes this opportunity to urge all African travel and tourism stakeholders to take advantage of this opportunity to stand up, be counted and ultimately be part of this journey – www.unwto.org.
Almost all Africa tourism institutions and destinations have launched a common, yet specific national and tailored campaigns to motivate and inspire all of us to look out for the “light at the end of the tunnel”. As the conveners of Africa Tourism Leadership Forum (ATLF) and Africa MICE Academy, Africa Tourism Partners (ATP) is fully committed to supporting these inspiring initiatives and intentions. They have already enriched the quality of life of many people during these challenging times.
ATP and its ATLF partners further committed to supporting the global practice of social and physical distancing, and encourage all stakeholders to heed to these calls for us to stay at home during this period. #Stayathome today and #Traveltomorrow. “By staying home today, we can travel tomorrow,” says Ambassador Zurab Pololikashvili, UNWTO Secretary-General “Because travelling tomorrow will support jobs, celebrate culture and promote international friendship and understanding,” Pololikashvili emphasises.
The expected impact of COVID-19 would be enormous, and the details will also depend on how long the epidemic lasts. Nonetheless, staying at home allows us to be more focused on looking for the silver lining in these unchartered waters. Our focus and determination will carry us all through and help us all to bounce back strong. Therefore, let’s stay at home, postpone our events and travel tomorrow. Let us all reconnect at the next Africa Tourism Leadership Forum 2020 to sharpen our vision of intra-Africa travel together – #ATL_Forum.
Small and Medium Enterprises that may need support for repurposing their businesses or review their business strategies for post-COVID-19 recovery are invited to join our newly introduced Africa SME associate membership programme free of charge at www.africatourismpartners.com/membership.
# Protect yourself & others | #Postpone your events. Don’t cancel.
About Africa Tourism Leadership Forum
Africa Tourism Leadership Forum (ATLF), is a Pan-African dialogue platform that brings together key stakeholders from Africa’s travel, tourism, hospitality and aviation sectors. It aims to provide a continental platform for dialogue, networking, sharing insights and devising strategies for sustainable travel and tourism development across the continent. It also focuses on the enhancement of Africa’s brand equity and promoting intra-Africa travel. The African Leadership dialogue platform designed and convened by Africans in Africa to promote tourism as a priority sector and significant economic development pillar in African states.
Rwanda is located in the heart of Africa and is at the centre of the East Africa Community. Kigali, the capital city, is uniquely positioned to serve a regional market of over 60 million people with a logistics advantage vs other regional capitals due to proximity, ease of access and advanced infrastructure.
In 2019 Rwanda was the world’s second-fastest-growing economy. The average growth over the decade to 2018 was 7.5% p.a. and the GDP per capita is USD 787 (3.8x since 2002). Key sectors contributing to Rwanda’s GDP are Services 48%, Agriculture 28%, Industry 17% and other sectors 7%.
Rwanda is ranked 2nd in Africa and 38th in the world in the ease of doing business and the only low-income country in the Global Top 50. The country is recognised as a leading reformer improving from 150thin 2008 to 38thin 2019 (World Bank, Doing Business Report, 2019).
Rwanda is a low-risk country, ranking 1st in Africa and 5th in the world as the safest country and recognised as having the lowest debt ratio in the region, stable credit ratings and a stable currency.
Rwanda is the fastest-growing destination and a preferred MICE destination. Kigali is ranked 2nd in Africa by the International Congress and Conference Association to host association meetings.
The most sought-after experience is Gorilla trekking in Volcanoes National Park where visitors can spend life-changing hours amongst the gentle giants with whom humans share 98% of the same DNA.
Visitors can enjoy a safari in Akagera National Park– one of Central Africa’s most extensive protected wetlands, the park has 440 square miles and is home to the ‘Big 5’ and over 500 bird species.
Delegates can experience the only canopy walkway in East Africa. The canopy walkway is a bridge suspended 200 feet above the Nyungwe National Park. The walk takes 60-90 minutes, and explorers get to enjoy the incredible umbrella trees, blooming orchids, lush greenery and encounters with the 13 primate species which live in Nyungwe. Also, visitors can enjoy Rwanda’s traditional cultural experience including visiting the King’s Palace Museum located in the south of the country. The Rwandan monarchy’s history can be explored by also visiting the renowned cows with horns as large as elephant tusks. These animals served an essential role during royal ceremonies and played a role in traditional Rwandan dance.
Contact Person for Rwanda Convention Bureau (RCB), Mr Yves GAHONZIRE, Business Development
Manager M: +250 788 357 850 / E: firstname.lastname@example.org and Ms. Samantha Gateretse, Marketing Manager M: +250 789 532 168 / E: email@example.com.