16-02-2021 by redazione
The Kenyan government has dealt a severe blow to the country's battered tourism sector by cutting a large part of the funds allocated to the Ministry of Tourism in the next budget.
In fact, 3.42 billion of the 12.8 billion available to the sector will be earmarked elsewhere for the promotion and marketing of Kenya as a destination.
At a time when it is necessary to invest in order to recover travellers and credibility, this cut almost sounds like a lack of interest in one of the sectors that have always created jobs and the image of this country, which is now also grappling with a major social crisis, in addition to the cyclical political uncertainties magnified by the somewhat premature start of the election campaign.
President of the Kenya Tourism Federation (KTF) Mohamed Hersi criticised the government's decision. He imagined that the sector would even need more funds to revive itself after the devastating blow of the pandemic.
"Instead, the new scenario will force the Kenya Tourism Board to scale down its marketing operations," Hersi commented in the media.
The hoteliers' association KAHC, in the voice of Coast Director Sam Ikwaye, also hinted that such news would bring destination Kenya to its knees, because with the Covid-19 crisis, the risk of being forgotten if promotion is not done is very high, especially for a country that is already often singled out for growing corruption.
"We cannot say how our industry will get through this crisis and survive, after these hard times caused by the pandemic," said Ikwaye. "There are hotel suppliers and staff who need prompt payments and salaries and we cannot say definitively when business will pick up, which means we have no resources to put into marketing.
It was expected that, after giving little support to the sector with few economic support initiatives (just for nine months the 2% discount on taxes, but with certain expenses for Covid-19 licenses and various adjustments), the State would at least think of promoting the destination to bring visitors back to Kenya. But for now it does not seem to want to go in this direction.
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