Hope for tourism as arrivals increase

WINDHOEK, 25 JUL- The number of tourists entering Namibia increased to 270 644 in 2021, representing a significant increase of 40.9 per cent from the previous year, Minister of Environment, Forestry and Tourism Pohamba Shifeta has announced. “Although the number of tourist arrivals is not at the level it was before the COVID-19 pandemic in 2019, an increase such…

WINDHOEK, 25 JUL (NAMPA) – The number of tourists entering Namibia increased to 270 644 in 2021, representing a significant increase of 40.9 per cent from the previous year, Minister of Environment, Forestry and Tourism Pohamba Shifeta has announced.

Speaking at the launch of the 2021 Annual Tourist Arrival Statistical Report here Monday, Shifeta said tourist arrivals increased substantially, from 192 026 in 2020 to 270 644 in 2021.

This growth, he said, is commendable considering the negative impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic on the tourism sector globally in 2020 and 2021.

“Although the number of tourist arrivals is not at the level it was before the COVID-19 pandemic in 2019, an increase such as this gives Namibia improved hope that the sector is on its way to recovery,” he said.

Shifeta indicated that the African tourist source markets in 2021 were dominated by arrivals from South Africa, Zimbabwe, Zambia and Botswana, whilst Germany, France, Switzerland, the United States of America and the United Kingdom made up the top five overseas tourist markets.

He further noted that overall, high numbers of tourist arrivals were recorded in the last quarter of the year, between October to December, accounting for 41.8 per cent of the total tourist arrivals. There was also an increase in the average length of stays in Namibia to 24 days, compared to 19 days in 2020.

“The slight growth in tourist numbers depicts raising confidence in the mind of tourists as Namibia is safe and ready for travel and tourism post-COVID-19. We appreciate the confidence and work that have gone into the marketing of the country as a preferred leisure destination,” said Shifeta.

He also indicated that the ministry has developed a Tourism Recovery Plan that sets out a framework for the tourism sector recovery process for the next three years, which provides targeted policy interventions, programmes and activities to be carried out to restore and support the sector.

(NAMPA)

LD/EK/AS

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