ADDIS ABABA- The Tourism Ministry has called on members of the diplomatic community and development partners based in Addis to take tourism as a priority area of engagement for the benefit of the people and economy of Ethiopia.
The ministry held a briefing session with members of the diplomatic community and development collaborates here yesterday under the theme the ‘Tourism Development, Opportunity and Challenges.’
Speaking at the occasion Tourism State Minister Seleshi Girma (PhD) said development partners and embassies are expected to encourage investment inflow in the tourism and hospitality sectors and inspire more people to come and visit Ethiopia.
Owing to Ethiopia’s enormous potential in the tourism sector, embassies and development partners need to make the sector a priority area of intervention and support both government and private sectors initiatives in tourism as well as heritage reparations.
“Ethiopia’s strategic location, the reputable airlines, its diverse tourism resources and history could attract more tourists across the globe. Nonetheless, service quality assurance, technology, heritage and wildlife conservation are among the areas where we want to collaborate,” the state minister elaborated.
For Shen Qinmin, Deputy Chief of the Chinese Embassy, Ethiopia’s tourism industry is on the move and holds a great potential in the future; expressing his country’s support in various areas including job creation and economic promotion.
“Ethiopia not only a beautiful country but also rich in culture, history and tourism resources as well. Both Ethiopia and China are countries of ancient civilizations where the two people have a lot to share. My embassy is encouraging more Chinese tourists to come here.”
Ethiopia has the biggest number of UNESCO-inscribed cultural sites in the Horn of Africa while Asia and China share a great resource of tourism as well. Therefore, the two countries can work together and bridge together to let people come to visit each other’s sites.
Mentioning the tourism industry’s huge contribution to the green development initiative, Qinmin asserted his country’s alignment with Ethiopia and its tourism aspirations.
Moroccan Ambassador to Ethiopia Nezha AlaouiM’hammdi expressed optimism about the two countries ability and keen interest to work together in the tourism sector. The briefing event not only offers a potential partnership with Ethiopia but it is also a good opportunity to strengthen the south-south cooperation in the field of tourism.
“The briefing is not only a way to market and make known Ethiopia but it is also an excellent initiative to open our eyes not only to the diplomatic community and foreigners but also Ethiopians to see how huge the country’s tourism potential is.”
The Ambassador further highlighted that tourism is not only leisure but it is deeply linked with culture and heritages. “Hence, preserving heritages by restitution of cultural goods are very important, in this regard, both countries are keen and sensitive to this topic.”
BY BETELHEM BEDLU
THE ETHIOPIAN HERALD FRIDAY 3 NOVEMBER 2023