News

29 July 2016

UN to Support Nigeria Grow Tourism Sector

Nigeria’s efforts to revamp its tourism sector has received a boost from the United Nations World Tourism Organisation (UNWTO), which has endorsed its five action plans. The Secretary-General of UNWTO, Taleb Rifai made the disclosure on Wednesday in Madrid, Spain at the conclusion of a two day meeting with Nigeria’s Minister of Information and Culture, Alhaji Lai Mohammed. Speaking with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) after the meeting, Rifai said that the world tourism body took …

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29 July 2016

South Africa’s hotel and tourism sector set for steady growth as visitor numbers continue to grow

The new visa regulations had a sharp impact on the South African tourism industry. South Africa’s hotel industry is set for steady growth in the next five years driven by an increase in the number of foreign visitors to the African continent. Pietro Calicchio, industry leader of hospitality and gambling, PwC Southern Africa (PwC.com), says: “Although the South African economy has weakened considerably, the overall outlook for hotels in South Africa is expected to remain positive.&r…

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29 July 2016

Tim Best

Following the sad news of Tim's death last week,  a number of members have asked for further details about the memorial and donations. The Daily Telegraph's announcement reads: Timothy Gerald Webster, died 18th July 2016 aged 71, after a short illness. A private funeral service was held at St. Mary’s Chilton. A Memorial Service will be held at All Saints Fulham on Wednesday 7th September at 3 p.m. Family flowers only. Donations to Children with Cancer UK (www.childrenwithcan…

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28 July 2016

Atta Africa Financial Update

Key commercial and political activity in Africa for private equity investors by DCE Partners, UK Private Equity advisors to Atta. Executive summary: Global capital fuelling African property markets. Property developers and private equity funds continue to pour investment into the continent, but with more focused strategies: over US$1.2 billion has been raised and allocated to real estate investment in Africa over the past year and there are expectations of this trend to continue. The last…

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28 July 2016

Industry needs to entice new guides

Lack of continuity and security are the reasons few young people choose to enter the guiding profession, Jenny Briscoe, Satsa Exco member and MD of Gold Reef Guides, told delegates at the Satsa conference last week. Linda Pampallis, CEO of Thompsons Africa, said guiding should be spoken about as if it was a career one could aspire to. André du Toit, Director of Satib Insurance Brokers, added that guiding was the best way to transform the industry. “It’s not an attractive car…

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27 July 2016

The Team Africa: Launch of AU passport noteworthy but symbolic

The Pan African Travel Association The Team Africa (TTA) has commended the efforts of the AU leadership to bring about seamless travels within Africa for Africans. The AU leaders launched a new African Passport at its Annual General Assembly in Kigali for Diplomats as a way of bringing to the fore the issue of free and easy movement within the continent. For members of Team Africa, who discussed the issue exhaustively, it was agreed that the launch of the AU document is noteworthy but symbolic…

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27 July 2016

Tourism in Partnership With Unisa Hosted Breakfast Session for Executive Development Programme for Women in Tourism

The Executive Development Programme will empower woman managers in the Tourism sector The Department of Tourism in partnership with UNISA Graduate School for Business Leadership (UNISA SBL) hosted a breakfast session for the Executive Development Programme (EDP) for Women in Tourism on Friday, 22 July 2016. The EDP breakfast was a session where the tourism partners offered their support to 20 women who have been selected for the EDP pilot programme intake. The 20 candidates are women in manage…

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26 July 2016

eTN to support Africa Hotel Investment Forum Rwanda

eTurboNews (eTN) announced it will support the Africa Hotel Investment Forum Rwanda as a media partner. The event is scheduled to be held from October 4-6, 2016 at the Radisson Blu Hotel & Convention Center in Kigali, Rwanda. Africa Hotel Investment Forum Rwanda will look at the economic trends, air connectivity and ultimately, how to drive investment into tourism projects. For the first time, the unique platform of AVIADEV Africa is being launched this year, bringing together airlines, ai…

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26 July 2016

Airline announces flights from India

RwandAir will introduce flights between Kigali and Mumbai in December. According to the airline’s CEO, John Mirenge, the Rwandan national carrier will operate four flights a week to Mumbai using its new A330-300 aircraft, which offers lie flat seats in business class. Mirenge said RwandAir had already appointed India’s Bird Travel as the general sales agent to market the airline in the vast Indian market. He pointed out that, as part of RwandAir’s expansion strategy, in the l…

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25 July 2016

Ethiopian Airlines Fuels Tourism in Durban

A 15-member Ghanaian delegation has ended a five-day familiarisation tour of selected tourist destinations in Durban, South Africa. The trip sponsored by Ethiopian Airlines with support from the Durban Tourism Authority is to expose the delegation comprising of travel and tour operators and journalists to the rich history and culture of the people of Durban. It was also in a bid to enhance Durban as a tourism destination in Africa. Mr Mengistu Adelahu, Ethiopian Airlines Traffic and Sales Mana…

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25 July 2016

SA launches third solar powered airport

The Minister of Transport, Dipuo Peters, has unveiled a solar plant at Upington International Airport in the Northern Cape on Friday - marking the third green energy airport in South Africa. The solar plant, a clean energy source, will supply the airport with a viable alternative source of electricity. It was built by the agency of the National Department of Transport, Airports Company South Africa (ACSA), which is committed to reduce load shedding on the country’s constrained power grid…

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25 July 2016

Uganda slashes single entry tourist visa fees

With effect from today July 22nd, tourists seeking to come to Uganda will pay half of the money they have been paying for single entry tourist visas. Government has halved the fees from $100 to $50 in an effort to encourage more tourists to come to the country that has been consistently ranked among top tour destinations in the world for the past few years. The CNN travel magazine last year ranked Uganda among the 16 top tourist destinations in the world. In 2012, Lonely Planet, another global…

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25 July 2016

Chinese to buy A & K

A Chinese real estate company is to buy Atta member, Abercrombie & Kent, for an undisclosed amount, the company announced last week. Zhonghong Holdings Group agreed to purchase a majority of shares from Abercrombie & Kent’s current owner, U.S.-based hedge fund manager Fortress Investment Group. The deal “will give us access to capital to finance new investments in the expanding luxury and adventure travel markets,” said Abercrombie & Kent founder and CEO Geo…

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22 July 2016

Arrivals to Sub-Saharan Africa bounces back

International tourist arrivals in Africa experienced a clear rebound in sub-Saharan Africa, up 13% for the first four months of 2016, according to United Nations World Tourism Organisation. This compares with global growth in tourist arrivals of 5%. According to UNWTO, by sub-region, sub-Saharan Africa led the growth, strongly rebounding from previous years’ modest results. Global growth is also slightly up on last year’s 4.6%. The organisation also warned that results for Africa a…

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22 July 2016

Surveillance aircraft to boost anti-poaching ops

Last month, Botswana took delivery of 14 Bat Hawk light surveillance aircraft, which will be used in anti-poaching patrols to protect elephants and other endangered animal species, Defence Web reports. According to the report, Brigadier Benjamin Masunga of the Botswana Defence Force said the government wanted to send a clear message that it remained committed to the fight against poaching to protect elephants, rhinos and other critically endangered animal species. Moreover, he said by vigorous…

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21 July 2016

Atta Africa Financial Update

Key commercial and political activity in Africa for private equity investors by DCE Partners, UK Private Equity advisors to Atta. Executive summary: Zimbabwe sees unprecedented protests. Follow Pastor Evan Mawarire’s #ThisFlag social media movement, Zimbabwe has experienced the largest and most peaceful anti-government protests for 15 years in recent weeks. The spontaneous protests began in frustration to worsening economic conditions and the re-introduction of the Zimbabwean dollar…

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21 July 2016

SA tourism growth on the up and up

Tourist arrivals in South Africa are continuing on their growth trajectory, according to the latest release from Statistics SA. More than 760,000 tourists arrived in the country in May this year, 11% more than in May 2015. This brings the total tourist arrivals for January to May 2016 to over 4.2 million, which is an increase of 15.7% compared to the same period last year - more than three times the average annual global growth rates experienced in international tourism. “The continuing …

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21 July 2016

Mzembi Is Africa's Official UNWTO Candidate

It is now confirmed, Tourism and Hospitality Industry Minister Dr Walter Mzembi is now Africa's official candidate for the United Nations World Tourism Organization Secretary General's post.Dr Mzembi's candidature was finally endorsed by the African Union Heads of State and Government Summit in Kigali, Rwanda on Monday, after going through all the bureaucratic process of the 54 member organization, unopposed. The Secretary General's post falls vacant in May 2017 when incumbent …

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20 July 2016

RwandAir to take delivery of four new planes over next ten months

According to the latest information received from Kigali, three of the four new aircraft presently on order by RwandAir will be delivered before the end of this year. The first of two Airbus A330s will join the fleet in September, with the date still to be confirmed, while another Boeing B737-800NG will follow in October, bringing the number of aircraft operated to 10 - the first time RwandAir's fleet to go double digit. The second Airbus A330 is expected to arrive to Kigali in December th…

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20 July 2016

Durban courts Indian, UK carriers for direct flights

More international airlines are considering launching direct flights out of Durban. In October last year, Norwegian said it would be launching flights from Copenhagen to Cape Town and Durban as well as flights from London Gatwick to Cape Town (see TNW October 28, 2015). “With plans for continued UK growth, Norwegian has now secured a UK Air Operating Certificate which will help open up access to bilateral traffic rights to a range of new routes including South America, Africa and Asia. D…

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20 July 2016

Govt to repair road to Maasai Mara

The Kenyan government has earmarked funds for the repair of the Narok-Sekenani road to improve travel to the Maasai Mara National Reserve. The road funding comes after numerous complaints from tourism players and protests from tour drivers and guides. Hoteliers and tour operators were worried that the bad condition of the road might affect visits to the popular Kenyan park at a time when the wildebeest migration has just begun. Recently, tour drivers and guides blocked the Narok-Bomet road to …

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19 July 2016

Ethiopia earns $3,4billion from tourism

Ethiopia earned more than $3.4 billion from tourism receipts in the fiscal year that ended on July7, a huge leap from last year's revenues.

 The Culture and Tourism ministry said the revenue was a half billion more than earnings in the previous year of $2.9 billion. More than 918 000 people visited Ethiopia during the year under review, the ministry said. Ten years ago tourism contributed one percent to Ethiopia's gross domestic product (GDP), which has now grown to four percent. Geza…

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19 July 2016

East African skies attract competitive airlines with growing tourism

East African skies are set to attract more airlines to operate within the region, taking advantage of the fast-growing tourist business and expansion of hotel investments in partner states. Tourism is growing to attract more tourists and travel trade investors in East Africa, reaping from strategic marketing campaigns being undertaken to sell the regional tourist products in the United States, Europe, Southeast Asia, the Pacific Rim, and the rest of Africa. The region, which comprises five mem…

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18 July 2016

FCO Travel Update: Namibia

Namibia travel advice 15-07-2016 10:48 AM GMT Latest update: Entry requirements section – make sure you have a valid yellow fever certificate with you for inspection by Namibian customs or health authorities, otherwise you could be refused entry or quarantined

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18 July 2016

Association of Uganda tour Operators (AUTO) Votes a new board

Yesterday, 14th July 2016 several heads and owners of tour companies in Uganda, who form the membership of the Association of Uganda Tour Operators, met in what was dubbed the “AUTO Annual General Meeting (AGM) 2016 at Hotel Africana,” an event they hold every year. The meeting was attended by over 200 people and more than 100 tour operators were represented. At this year’s AGM, the previous board gave an account of what they have accomplished over their 2 years of service si…

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18 July 2016

New Polish charter flight lands in Mombasa

An airbus A-321 from Small Planet charter operated by Tui Poland made a grand inaugural flight into Mombasa's Moi International Airport (Mia) on Thursday amid applause from tourism stakeholders. Tourism Cabinet secretary, Mr Najib Balala was on hand to receive the inaugural flight which was welcomed by a colourful water canon salute by two fire tenders from the MIA Fire Brigade and a troupe of traditional dancers. As the plane taxied to a stop, the two huge fire tenders that stood side by …

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15 July 2016

Ethiopia’s Tourism Revenue Hits Record High in 2015, Beats Kenya and Tanzania Combined

Ethiopia’s tourism revenue jumped 20.7 percent in 2015 to a record high of $3.5 billion from $2.9 billion in the previous fiscal year lifted by increased number of foreign tourists visiting the East African nation, data from the Ministry of Culture and Tourism showed. The country’s revenue was more than what it more tourists established neighbours, Kenya and Tanzania, earned last year combined. The two east African neighbours cumulatively earned $2.77 billion. Kenya’s revenue…

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15 July 2016

Nordic roadshow focuses on MICE segment

The 14th annual Taste of Africa Roadshow in the Nordics, from October 17-20, is going niche this year. It will focus exclusively on the meetings, incentives, conferences and exhibitions (MICE) segment of the market under the banner, Taste of Africa MICE Roadshow 2016. Copenhagen, Stockholm and Gothenburg are some of the destinations in Scandinavia that have been identified as key MICE hubs with the biggest potential. Suppliers joining the roadshow have been handpicked and are requested to brin…

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14 July 2016

Atta Africa Financial Update

Key commercial and political activity in Africa for private equity investors by DCE Partners, UK Private Equity advisors to Atta. Executive summary: What's fare is fair. Five hundred Uber drivers in South Africa have joined the South African Transport and Allied Workers’ Union because, they say, they are exploited by the cut price taxi company. They also plan to take the company to the labour court. There are more than 4,000 Uber drivers operating in South Africa, with 2,500 op…

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14 July 2016

What Hosting the African Union Summit Means for Rwanda's Hospitality Industry

The African Union (AU) Summit, which will be hosted in Kigali from July 10-18, presents a big opportunity for Rwanda's private sector, particularly hoteliers and those in the hospitality industry, according to Francine Havugimana, vice chair of the Private Sector Federation's Tourism Chamber and owner of Impala Hotels. A boost in business The most obvious benefit is more bookings, plain and simple. Some 3,500 delegates are expected to attend the summit along with their delegations. All…

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13 July 2016

World Travel Market London 2016 to mark key responsible tourism anniversaries

World Travel Market London 2016, to be held from November 7-9, will commemorate two key responsible tourism anniversaries this year; 20 years of responsible tourism and 10 years of World Responsible Tourism Days. This year’s program will explore how well the travel industry has embraced responsible tourism, celebrate best practices and ask if responsible tourism has come of age after 20 years, while also attempting to predict what the industry will look like in 2036. The South African Go…

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13 July 2016

The gorilla naming ceremony in Rwanda expected to attract celebrities to Kinigi

Rwanda will host the 12th annual Kwita Izina, the gorilla-naming ceremony inspired by the ancient Rwandan tradition of naming babies soon after they are born, on Friday, September 2. In the 11 years since the event was established, two hundred and sixteen mountain gorilla babies have been named in a celebration of nature together with the communities who protect our majestic mountain gorillas. The event this year is expected to bring together thousands of Rwandans, friends of Rwanda and even c…

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12 July 2016

Uganda Starts Online Visa Application

Visiting the Pearl of Africa for business or Pleasure has never been easier. Tourists, business men and women, students, among other visitors seeking to enter Uganda can now apply for visas online. "O Uganda has introduced the online visa application system which started working with effect from July 2016. This means that all persons intending to come to Uganda for holiday, tourism, business, study, visit, medical reasons, are required to apply and obtain a visas online. The Visas that ca…

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12 July 2016

New railway to link Mombasa and Nairobi

The construction of Kenya’s first standard-gauge railway from Mombasa to Nairobi, at a cost of $3.2 billion, is expected to be completed by March 2017. According to Kenya’s Transport Principal Secretary, Irungu Nyakera, civil works on the railway project are 80% complete. Nyakera says 280km of track has so far been laid from Voi to Sultan Hamud; the total route length is 472km. He adds that the Kenyan government has already started the acquisition of locomotives, passenger coaches …

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11 July 2016

Sun Destinations revamps two camps

Sun Destinations’ newly launched Botswana safari properties, Xobega Island Camp and Tuskers Bush Camp, are being renovated. The refurbishment of Tuskers Bush Camp, in a vast private concession between Nxai Pan and Moremi Game Reserve, is nearing completion. “This month, brand-new Tuskers receives its finishing touches, enhancing its simplistic style with decorative touches reminiscent of an old-world era,” says Brett Thomson, MD of Sun Destinations. “Neutral tones and n…

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11 July 2016

Zanzibar to get tourism boost with a ‘green hotel’

Tanzania-based Bakhresa Group has appointed Verde Hotels from South Africa to develop and manage the total overhaul and upgrading of the old Mtoni Marine Hotel in Zanzibar Fotolia 84918136 Subscription XLThe proposed hotel is meant to integrate both luxury and environmental best practice.  The brand new five-star property will be known as Hotel Verde, Zanzibar’s greenest hotel. Bakhresa Group chairman Said Salim Awadh Bakhresa said,“We are serious about being the leaders of th…

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08 July 2016

Zambia courts international airlines

The Zambia Airports Corporation has confirmed that it is in talks with several potential clients who are interested in flying to Lusaka, with Qatar Airways set to commence direct flights to Zambia next year. Communication and Brand Manager, Mweembe Sikaulu, said as Zambia strived to become an aviation hub in the region, ZAC was engaging a number of airlines to service the country’s routes and create direct flights with different markets in Europe and other regions. “It has been con…

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08 July 2016

Air Zimbabwe will host Annual General Assembly of the African Airline Association

It is now just four months to go until Air Zimbabwe will host the Annual General Assembly of the African Airline Association, in short AFRAA. The meeting will take place at the resort town of Victoria Falls and the venue is the Elephant Hills Resort and Conference Centre, located close to the falls. This will be Africa's largest gathering of airlines and related service providers, like Civil Aviation Authorities, airports, ground handlers, catering firms but also manufacturers, insurers an…

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07 July 2016

Atta Africa Financial Update

Key commercial and political activity in Africa for private equity investors by DCE Partners, UK Private Equity advisors to Atta. Executive summary: Israel's Netanyahu starts landmark Africa trip. Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu commemorated the 40th anniversary this week of the Uganda hostage rescue in which his brother died, as he started a historic tour seeking new trade partners in Africa. Netanyahu himself attributes the event involving his brother to his hardliner atti…

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07 July 2016

Turkish boosts Cape Town route

Turkish Airlines will dedicate direct daily flights to Cape Town from Istanbul, effective October 30. Currently, the airline flies daily to the Mother City via Durban and Johannesburg. “Last year we operated our first Cape Town to Istanbul direct seasonal flight and it was a great success,” says Kenan Ince, Cape Town GM of Turkish Airlines. “However, because of fleet constraints and availability, it made better sense to operate the flights from Cape Town via Johannesburg and …

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06 July 2016

Israeli PM Benjamin Netanyahu maiden Kenya tour

Netanyahu is the first head of Israel's government to visit Kenya, following an invitation by President Uhuru Kenyatta in February. "This is his first stop on a tour of Africa," State House spokesman Manoah Esipisu said in a statement on Sunday. President Uhuru Kenyatta invited Netanyahu for talks on strengthening relations as Kenya seeks to expand international trade. “The relations between the countries are strong and the two heads of government are keen to continue expan…

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06 July 2016

South African Tourism announces the future of Indaba and Meetings Africa

South African Tourism owns and manages two trade show exhibitions, Indaba and Meetings Africa. The objective for both platforms is to create market access and business growth for African tourism products and services. A Rapid Review on Indaba conducted in 2014 investigated the role of Indaba and suggested ways in which to enhance the offering moving forward. This included execution strategies to elevate the trade show exhibition and pairing with a strategic partner was one of the options sugge…

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05 July 2016

Another chance to market Zambia’s tourism

The launch of a flight between Cape Town and Livingstone by Kenya Airways is a boost to the tourism sector and a true collaboration that further cements relations between Kenya and Zambia. The flights between South Africa and Zambia will give an opportunity to tourists to visit places of interest in both countries. But much more so for Zambia, whose tourism figures need a boost. Kenya Airways has launched a flight to Cape Town via Livingstone, Zambia’s tourism capital. The flight will ru…

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05 July 2016

Kenya Airways appoints new COO

Kenya Airways has appointed a new chief operating officer, the latest management change that the national carrier has made amid restructuring efforts. KQ, as the airline is known by its international code, has announced that Jan de Vegt will replace Yves Guibert as its COO effective August 1. Mr Vegt joins KQ from Cobalt Ground Solutions in the UK where he is currently the managing director. He replaces Mr Guibert who took over the job from KQ’s Mbuvi Ngunze when he was promoted to head …

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04 July 2016

Government officials to use KQ when travelling

Kenya government officials are expected to use the national carrier Kenya Airways when travelling starting 1st July. The move is in a bid to support the national carrier, said Najib Balala who was speaking during the unveiling the Magical Kenya Branding on KQ’s Dreamliner. “Starting 1st July, government officials must travel with Kenya Airways. Cabinet has made the decision and implementation begins Friday. Look at countries such as Britain, its government officials always use Brit…

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04 July 2016

Kenya: Tourism recovery spurs economy to 5.9% growth in Q1

Kenyan growth picked up in the first quarter of 2016, helped by improved performance across the economy and especially tourism, said the statistics office. The Kenya National Bureau of Statistics (KNBS) said in a statement the economy expanded by 5.9 percent in the first three months of this year from five percent in the same period last year. In 2015, East Africa’s biggest economy struggled with a number of challenges including attacks blamed on Somalia’s al Shabaab militants that…

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04 July 2016

New roads to Mahale National Park in Tanzania

It is delightful to learn that Mahale Mountains National Park will soon open its doors to the world of tourism. Mahale is home to troops of chimpanzees. The wildlife sanctuary is scarcely accessible as it is set deep in the forests that cover the mountains. Access to the park has, almost exclusively, been by air and marine transport. But Tanzania National Parks (Tanapa) is currently constructing roads that will soon lead tourists into chimpanzee territory. Mahale Mountains National Park will s…

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