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2023 Africa’s Travel Indaba opens in Durban, South Africa

Patricia De Lille, South African Minister of Tourism, declaring 2023 Africa’s Travel INDABA open in Durban, on Tuesday

The 2023 edition of Africa’s Travel Indaba (ATI) started on Tuesday in Durban, South Africa, with delegates from 21 countries.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the event with the theme, “Unlimited Africa”, was declared opened by Patricia De Lille, South African Minister of Tourism, at the Inkosi Albert Luthuli International Convention Centre.

According to Lille, to reposition African travel and tourism market, Africans have to engage in healthy and balanced collaborations and competitions.

She said competition was often considered to be the life-blood of destination marketing and tourism.

“While healthy competition can drive growth and innovation, unhealthy competition can lead to a race to the bottom, with businesses and destinations undercutting each other on price and quality.

“As the tourism industry, let us foster a culture of healthy competition, where businesses and destinations are encouraged to compete on quality and innovation.

“Let us remember that long-term success in the industry depends not only on competing but also on recognising the value of collaboration and partnerships.

“So, each player in the value chain has a unique role to play, and by working together, we can create seamless and memorable travel experiences for visitors – that is the spirit of Africa’s Travel Indaba,” she said.

She said the 2023 ATI, at near the pre-pandemic scale, also demonstrated that Africans could host world-class safe events.

“This year, at Africa Travel Indaba, we are working hard to exceed pre-COVID attendance numbers and have an estimated 6, 000 people attending from all over South Africa, Africa and the rest of the world.

“This year’s Indaba sees more than 350 tourism products being showcased, 1,000 buyers from across the tourism ecosystem and just under 1,000 exhibitors.

“The attendees include destination marketing bodies, hotel groups, airlines, tour operators, and 10 African tourism boards and 21 African countries represented here,” she said.

Lille said that the event was hosted under the mantra “Shaping Africa’s Tomorrow, Through Connection Today”.

She said a lot had changed during the COVID-19 pandemic, and the nation found it necessary and critical to reposition ATI to ensure it remains relevant in the current environment.

“This positioning speaks to the essence of Africa’s Travel Indaba, bringing the world to Africa to positively influence the continent’s economic and cultural trajectories.

“To all the buyers present here today, you are critical in promoting Africa as a premier travel destination and thank you for continuing to partner with us in showcasing our continent’s diverse experiences and attractions.

“To all the African product owners, thank you for your contribution in creating a cohesive and thriving tourism sector that benefits communities and promotes faster economic growth,” she said.


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Written by Tom Chiahemen

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