THE Tourism Confederation of Tanzania (TCT) has received with delight news of the World Bank (WB), classifying Tanzania as a lower middle-income economy (LMIE), with the tourism sector contributing immensely to the achievement.
TCT says it is something to be proud of as the tourism sector, companies, the Ministry of Natural Resources and Tourism, the government and all Tanzanians.
“This is good news indeed for the country and the government. We are proud of achieving such status because it is a positive step as our economy is growing well under the current leadership (of President John Magufuli). So, we should make more efforts as we are on track,” said TCT Executive Secretary Richard Rugimbana.
He expressed his satisfaction in the fact that the tourism sector leads in the country in earning the government foreign currency for the past five years or so, but said the achievement was for all sectors of the economy that had contributed.
“We have made it all – the mining and tourism sectors and others. So, we can congratulate ourselves on using well opportunities presented and benefit from them as individuals, companies and the country in general,” he said.
Tanzania is gratified to have registered a huge increase in revenue collection from the tourism sector.
While it earned $1.9bn from tourism in 2015 as proceeds from 1,102,619 tourists, about 500,000 direct employment opportunities and a million indirect employment opportunities.
Last year revenue rose sharply to at least $2.6bn.
The latest lower middle- income economy classification released by the WB shows that tremendous strides has been made five years ahead of the Tanzania Development Vision, 2025.
President Magufuli has been credited for spearheading key economic reforms. He as well expressed his delight through his twitter account.
TCT is the umbrella organisation representing 12 private business sub-sector associations involved in travel and tourism. It is the voice of the tourism sector.
Its members include the Hotels Association of Tanzania (HAT), Intra-African Travel and Tourism Association (ITTA) and Tanzania Air Operators Association (TAOA).
Other members are Tanzania Association of Cultural Tourism (TACTO), Tanzania Association of Tour Operators (TATO), Tanzania Hunting Operators Association (THOA), Tanzania Professional Hunters Association (TPHA), Tanzania Society of Travel Agents (TASOTA), Tanzania Tour Guides Association (TTGA), Tourism Professional Hospitality Association of Tanzania (TPHAT), Zanzibar Association of Tourism Investors (Z ATI) and Zanzibar Association of Tour Operators (ZATO).
TCT seeks to ensure through representation at national level, appropriate macro policies and strategies are adopted for developing and maintaining an environment in which international and domestic tourism prospers and the business sector is able to achieve successful growth and development while protecting Tanzania’s natural and cultural heritage.