Ethiopia Aims To Triple Tourism Industry By 2020

Addis Ababa expects annual economic growth of the sector for the next five years, having being engaged by huge spending on infrastructure and an expansion of its services and agricultural sectors.

Ethiopia Culture and Tourism Minister said that even though the country is lacking the palm-fringed beaches and safari trails of neighbouring Kenya and Tanzania, the Horn of Africa country boasts magnificent terrain and a fascinating imperial past.

The visitor numbers have risen at least 10% a year for the past decade, although from a very low base, adding that more than 750,000tourists came during fiscal year 2014/2015, generating $2.9billion for the economy.

“There is a lot of demand in terms of bookings and investment plans. Our target is to receive more than 2.5 million in five years’ time. This sector will generate foreign direct investment and foreign currency and create job opportunities, as well as contribute to image-building. This sector will generate foreign direct investment and foreign currency and create job opportunities, as well as contribute to image-building.”

Hilton Worldwide Holdings signed a management deal recently to open its first hotel in Ethiopia in more than four decades, while sub-Saharan Africa’s first Marriott-branded serviced apartments have also been unveiled in the capital.

Sheraton, Radisson and Golden Tulip are among a handful of global groups already operating, and US chain Best Western International Inc, France’s Accor Hotels and Ramada say they are also working on new projects.

Ethiopia’s target for 2020 looks modest, however, in comparison to that of Egypt, where 9.9 million tourists visited last year. “We are a peaceful and stable country. Plus, we have the right policies and strategies. It will not be long before we reach the levels of our neighbours,” minister said.