Tourism Expo to unite communities
The Namibia’s Tourism Expo 2016 which kicks off on 18 to 21 May, will this year celebrate its 18th year anniversary and will run under the theme of “Community”, where Namibians from different communities will celebrate unity in different innovative ways.
“The significance of the fact that the Expo has been growing, be it on the visitors side or exhibitors from neighbouring countries, is already a milestone,” said Maggy Mbako, Public Relations Executive of Namibia Media Holding, the event organisers.
Despite Africa tourism figures being affected last year by the Ebola pandemic, Mbako said that, the Expo did not experience any decline or resistance from exhibitors or visitors.
“Our international exhibitors who are mainly from within SADC recorded an increase from previous years, as exhibitors from different destinations brought in more stuff for their stands for different engagements,” she said.
Mbako said the highlight of the Expo this year, in embracing the theme is the Unity Square, a joint exhibition point in the Presidential Hall, introduced for the key stakeholders to share a stand.
“We will have Namibia Tourism Board, City of Windhoek, NWR, Ministry of Environment and Tourism and TransNamib exhibiting from one united stand,” she said.
“This gives a better networking platform, improved working relationship, opportunity of sharing information and new trends in the market as well as the opportunity for us to have the one stop shop for key tourism information,” she added.
In addition to that, Mbako said they have invited the Living Museums from the three regions, Zambezi, Kavango and Otjozondjupa.
“They will have their original museums set up at the Expo grounds, showcasing their way of living as well as practical village life and will be entertaining the visitors as well as exhibitors during the four days,” she added.
Furthermore, she said that a Responsible Tourism Award, is another project they embarked upon, where Tourism Operations in the Accommodation sector and Tour operators will take part.
“The crowning ceremony will take place on the 19th May during the Expo, with three finalists from the accommodation sector and two from the tour operators.
Meanwhile, Mbako said, that the Chef’s theatre remains the key attraction of the Expo, as it has maintained its standards for the past 4 years.
“This year, we will be staging some of the well known names in the food industry, therefore it will be a stand to visit during the Expo, for the tasting of different cuisines paired with different types of good wines,” she said.