Tourism sector surrounded by challenges – survey
The latest quarterly tourism report suggests that the tourism sector continues to face challenges based on poorly trained and inexperienced staff, lack of readily available capital for investment, and the high cost of operations.
The FNB/FENATA Travel Index results of the third quarter of 2016 further shows that a lack of planning and foresight within the industry results in the obstruction of growth in the Namibian market.
Market Research Manager, Daniel Kavishe, said the Index is composed of exchange rates, tourist arrivals and room occupancy rates deflated to incorporate increasing local prices.
“These figures are indexed and weighted to approximate the business climate in the tourism sector. An opinion survey is further conducted to augment the results,” he said.
According to one of the respondents of the survey, ineffective marketing of Namibia overseas is one of the major challenges.
Others said that that challenges are numerous, like planning for future investments and employment of more staff, which has been put on hold since the Namibia Equitable, Economic Empowerment Framework discussions surfaced.
“Arbitrary politics, growing crime rates, corruption, poaching, bad water crisis management, poor service delivery and exorbitant commodity price hikes are of huge concern,” they added.
Furthermore the respondents felt that increased marketing of the southern towns in the country is needed in order to give a more representative view.
“We believe that unless government officials become more approachable and local residents understand the importance of customer service, the industry’s growth will continue to be hindered,” some respondents echoed.
Meanwhile, in terms of competition, 35% of the respondents felt that the main competitor is South Africa, while 22% believe that Botswana is a reputable competitor.