ZambiaÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s tourism industry hailed
Robinson, who was in the country last week for a Malaria workshop hosted in Livingstone, about 600kms south of Lusaka, said the number of tourist resorts supported by untapped tourism potential impressed her. Robinson said Zambia was an exceptional tourism destination because of its wide range of animal and natural sites that could make tourism one of the country’s mainstay. She said the introduction of boat cruises on the Zambezi River; game viewing of lions, elephants, giraffes, rhinos and other animal species at the various national parks in Livingstone and national parks, made Zambia an exceptional case. She urged the international community to assist Zambia through various resources to develop its tourism industry. “I am particularly impressed with the unspoilt number of animals and waterfalls that are rarely found in most countries, particularly in Europe and this makes Zambia very unique,” she said. “You need support from the international community if the tourism industry is to contribute to economic development.” She lauded the government for introducing a deliberate programme to promote Zambia internationally through the ‘Visit Zambia campaign’ noting that if funded adequately, Zambia could earn more revenue from tourism and not depend on minerals. Last year, Zambia introduced the ‘Visit Zambia Campaign’ to promote the country’s tourism sites including the Victoria Falls, in Livingstone, one of the seven wonders of the world. Victoria Falls was named after the queen of Scotland in 1855 by visiting explorer and missionary, David Livingstone when he became the first white man to see the tourism spot. The government, through the tourism agency, Zambia National Tourism Board (ZNTB) last year opted to partner with various interest groups including the European Union to promote the industry through funding for the development and refurbishment of most of the memorable sites. According to the ZNTB programme for this year, it seeks to market various waterfalls in various parts of the country, using the Victoria Falls as the Gateway for tourism promotion to the rest of the world. The government has set aside more than US$2 billion in the 2006 budget to promote the industry in anticipation that the private sector would contribute through setting up various resorts.