Hoteliers buoyed by cruise tourism pledge

Hoteliers buoyed by cruise tourism pledge

Tourism Cabinet Secretary Najib Balala. [Photo by Maarufu Mohamed/Standard]

Tourism stakeholders in Coast region have welcomed the announcement by Tourism Cabinet Secretary Najib Balala that a consultant will be hired to help with marketing cruise tourism.

The stakeholders said they welcomed any move to revamp the industry.

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Kenya’s tourism sector grew by 9.8 per cent in 2017 despite the turmoil following the General Election to bring in 1.47 million visitors, while revenue rose 20.3 per cent to Sh120 billion.

Industry players have their hopes up and want the Government to leave nothing to chance as it seeks to boost tourism fortunes further.

Deliberate efforts

“We salute the deliberate efforts by CS Balala and call on the Government to ensure that consultants’ reports are actualised for the (improvement) of the industry,” said Kenya Association of Hotelkeepers and Caterers (KAHC) Coast branch Executive Officer Sam Ikwaye.

Presiding over the official opening of a two-day tourism workshop in Nairobi, Mr Balala said the Government would bring on board a consultant to offer expert advice on how Kenya could reap from cruise tourism.

Already, construction of a modern cruise handling terminal at the Mombasa port costing Sh450 million is nearing completion, with financial support from TradeMark East Africa.