ZIMBABWETourism Authority (ZTA) which is exhibiting in Hall 3 at the 2019 edition of Zimbabwe International Trade Fair (ZITF) says they are using this year’s fair to drive their MICE tourism agenda.
MICE which stand for Meetings Incentives Conferences and Exhibition is an important component of tourism and has potential to earn the country a lot revenue through receipts.
Although MICE is related to tourism, people who are in business or other sectors of the economy can still participate in it through bidding to host for example international conferences, meetings and exhibitions in their line of business among many others.
The biggest challenge has been that not many people are aware of the existence of MICE business hence the little impact it has had on the economy.
However, ZTA head of corporate affairs Godfrey Koti said they will be moving around exhibition stands at ZITF talking about MICE.
“Our major focus is to push MICE tourism that is why we are here where the business is happening and we are targeting these companies that are here to assist us in making sure that we attract the correct numbers in terms of business conferences and exhibitions such as this one.
“This is a very big one (ZITF) that has been going on for years but we want to multiply that effect that they have given us here in Zimbabwe so we coming here to talk to people who are organising these events to make sure that we move in certain set direction in terms of enticing people to come and work with us in terms of increasing the momentum where MICE tourism is concerned.
“We are here to make them fully understand MICE, that is why we brought a full team from our Conventions Bureau Department they will be going around the stands to explain to decision makers we are also going to be partaking in other various forums that will gather people together like your IBC that is happening here we have a platform where we are going to unpack what MICE tourism is about,” he said.
Koti added that “we have our very own cocktail with the Marketers of Zimbabwe where we are also going to be unpacking various issues to do with MICE tourism because it’s such a huge element of tourism that we need to continue to tap into but we want everybody to move along with us and understand it.
“And yes when you ask do people understand MICE tourism they don’t understand we are here to make them understand and we are also here to take ideas from different people from various quarters whom may not necessarily be in the tourism world but we want them to understand that they can share their ideas in a platform with ZTA and they see them being implemented as well,” he said.
Meanwhile, Koti has also revealed that they intend to interact with players in the tourism sector and business during the Asambeni which runs concurrently with ZITF.
“We are here for Asambeni where we want to interact with the industry, with international buyers in preparation also for our very own expo which is the Sanganai/Hlanganani World Travel Expo.
“We want people to come in their numbers and we have set targets that we want to meet in terms of buyers that come into the country so we are excited with this opportunity to be here in Bulawayo to talk to the industry, to the business community and above that we will be pushing our domestic tourism drive where we want people to interlink and travel locally.
“Yes there are issues to do with pricing that has been addressed and talked about but we are continuing to engage industry on that to make sure that it’s not a perennial thing that every time there is something prices go up.
“We are trying to ensure that there is harmony because we represent their interest and we also represent the interest of the government in that mix but we are looking ahead to a fantastic trade fair and we do hope business will prevail and do well in particular tourism business,” he said.-