Tanzania has managed to collect a total of US$6,255 billion (over 10trn/-) in five years from tourism industry.
Deputy Minister of Agriculture, Food and Cooperatives, Adam Malima told the house that between 2007 and 2011, the country had received a total of 3,854,467 tourists, who brought in the mentioned amount.
Malima revealed this while answering a question posed by Mgogoni lawmaker, Kombo Khamis Kombo (CUF), who wanted to know the amount of money collected from tourism industry, taking into account that Tanzania is ahead of other East African countries for having a wide-range of tourist destinations in the region.
The minister further explained that in average, Tanzania gets 770,894 tourists per annum and the number is subjected to grow in the next few years.
Citing statistics, Malima said in 2011 Tanzania managed to collect US$1,353.29 million from 867,994 tourists who visited the country in that period.
He however admitted that revenues collected from the sector in the neighbouring Kenya were US$1.10 billion in 2011, the amount which was collected from 1,265,136 tourists.
“I must admit that Kenya are ahead in terms of marketing their tourists’ attractions…we (Tanzania), are also following the similar path and right now we’re on the right track,” he said.
He also revealed that Tanzania is endowed with numerous tourist destinations compared to any other EAC countries, adding that some of the tourist sites include hunting tourism, photographic tourism, beach tourism, mountain trekking, bird watching tourism, cultural tourism and conference tourism.
Malima was optimistic that the number of tourists has been increasing on annual basis following the improvement of key infrastructures to tourists’ destinations including road and air transport.
He said the Kilimanjaro International Airport (KIA), is an important gate-way for tourists visiting the country as there are some airlines which have launched direct flights from European countries to KIA.
“This is an important endeavour in developing tourism sector in the country,” he said.