Erongo Business and Tourism Expo a boost for local economy
By Adolf Kaure in Walvis Bay.
The fourteenth edition of the Erongo Business and Tourism Expo was recently held in Walvis Bay under the theme: “Rethink, Reimagine and Reinvent Value Chains for Economic Development Post the COVID-19 Pandemic.”
According to the harbour town’s deputy mayor, Saara Mutondoka, events like the Erongo Business and Tourism Expo create opportunities which can boost not only the town’s economy but the country as a whole.
“Let’s promote and develop domestic tourism with so much passion that it will propel international tourism and investment opportunities,” she said.
The Walvis Bay municipal council hosted the Erongo Business and Tourism Expo to allow SMEs (Small and Medium Enterprises) a platform for exhibiting products and services. Boosting social-economic development, employment creation through SME support is synonymous with expos as highlighted by Mutondoka.
Mutondoka said that customer service needs to be improved to attract tourists back to the country. “Tourism is a customer-driven industry. By offering efficient and effective customer service, you are guaranteed that your service secures you more business,” the deputy mayor said.
Walvis Bay is strategically located in Namibia as an economic hub in the Erongo region and for the country as a whole.
The deputy mayor, however stated that due to how the COVID-19 pandemic having affected business, the wheel needs to be redefined for the tourism industry as well as SMEs to keep prospering. “It cannot be business as usual as the pandemic has changed the dynamics of how business is done. It is time to embark on transformational change and create a conducive environment for both business and tourism to flourish,” she said.
The Expo is also held to promote and encourage public dialogue on challenges faced by the business fraternity as well as the communities.
The Erongo Business and Tourism Expo provides an opportunity to showcase the valuable assets of the region such as mining, tourism, fishing, the blue economy and other resources and allows sponsors to highlight and promote services offered in Namibia, SADC (Southern Africa Development Community) and the rest of the continent.
Erongo Governor, Neville Andre (second from right) with Walvis Bay deputy mayor Saara Mutondoka (far right) and other dignitaries, cutting the ribbon to open the Erongo Tourism and Business Expo officially. (Photograph Contributed)