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Tourism industry remains subdued

Staff Writers

DESPITE the Zimbabwe Tourism Authority (ZTA)’s claim this week that tourist arrivals have increased, hotel occupancies, one of the major indicators of tourist arrivals, have remained largely de


Figures from Rainbow Tourism Group (RTG) and Zimsun Leisure, two of the country’s leading hotel groups, show that the tourism industry remains subdued.

Zimsun Leisure chief executive officer, Shingi Munyeza, said occupancies had remained depressed at around 41% in most of the hotels over the past two years.

“They have not improved (hotel occupancies), contrary to some statistics we are getting,” said Munyeza.

“The data capturing technique is just not right. That is why we as an industry donated computers to the immigration department. We want to improve the statistical generation method.”

RTG said although business was getting better in their city hotels, occupancies in the resort hotels had remained static. Occupancies at RTG resort hotels are currently at 30% while city hotels have a 60% rate.

This is in stark contrast to the ZTA figures released last week indicating that the ailing tourism sector was on a recovery path.

The numbers from the hotels have thrown into doubt the ZTA’s figures, which show a marked rise in tourist arrivals in the country.

ZTA was quoted in the state media as saying tourist arrivals in Zimbabwe had increased to 2,2 million last year from 2,041 million in 2002.

ZTA chief executive Tichaona Jokonya said he could not comment as he was in a meeting.

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