Simiyu Regional Commissioner Anthony Mtaka told The Guardian yesterday that the mammoth facility is projected to cost 6trn/- and once completed, is expected to turn-around Tanzania’s tourism industry.
How he managed to convince investors to replicate the world’s famous American facility to by-pass mega cities such as Cairo, Lagos, Johannesburg or Cape Town is something RC Mtaka did not divulge.
However, he stated that a firm from the Singapore is behind the project and land for its implementation has already been acquired.
“It will be known as Serengeti Disney and it will be built at Kijereshi area in Busega District, Simiyu Region,” he elaborated.
“The investor behind the project Azhar A. Malik is in the country and has just toured the project area accompanied by the Tanzanian High Commissioner to Malaysia, Dr Ramadhan Dau. He affirmed that works on the project will start early 2020 with initial installment of USD 500 million.”
Walt Disney with its globally scattered theme parks and widely popular animated films is a world-famous name and its presence in Tanzania will further boost the country’s image globally.
The first Disneyland theme park was built at the Disneyland Resort in Anaheim, California in the United States and was opened on July 17, 1955. It is the only theme park designed and built to completion under the direct supervision of Walt Disney.
As of 2019, the American recreational facility had a larger cumulative attendance than any other theme park in the world, with 726 million visits since it opened.
Recently, the film entertainment firm Disney rebooted its popular ‘Lion King’ movie with its background setting this time being based within the Serengeti, which is Tanzania’s second largest National Park. The film is currently topping charts around the world.
Tanzania gets an upper level of 1.3 million tourists per year. It is being anticipated that once the ‘Serengeti Disney’ opens in two years’ time, it may attract an additional million visitors, to start with.
In yet another development there, the Deputy Minister for Finance and Planning, Dr Ashatu Kijaji has inspected the ongoing construction of the Institute of Finance Management (IFM) campus for Simiyu Region, accompanied by the IFM board chairperson, Dr Benson Bana.