Kenya Tourism to improve highly


Masai on the balcony of Tembo House looking out at the permanent tented camp

Kenya’s tourism sector is on the road to solid recovery with an impressive record high arrivals in the first half of 2012.

Statistics released by Kenya’s ministry of Tourism indicate that 549,083 tourists visited Kenya in the first six months of 2011, surpassing the previous high hit in 2010 by 13.6 percent.

Visitors from Britain led the way accounting for 14.3 percent of arrivals, followed by the United States on 9.3 percent and then Italy, Germany and India.

The tourism industry is projecting to earn Sh81 billion this year on the back of an expected increase in tourist arrivals helped by the ongoingrecovery of key source markets, players said.

The impressive results also come days after former Safaricom CEO Michael Joseph resigned as Kenya Tourist Board chairman only eight months into the job citing a World Bank engagement.

Last year, the tourism sector fetched the country earnings of Sh73.7 billion but fell far below the Sh100 billion target which players said was exaggerated.

While releasing last year results, Tourism minister Najib Balala said the industry had adjusted its targets to reflect some of the challenges in the international market.

 “Tourist projections also depend on other factors including security. The sector also suffered from the unprecedented European ash cloud that denied the country new arrivals,” said KTB managing director, Mr Muriithi Ndegwa in a previous Interview with Business Daily

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