KENYA EXPECTS 3M FOREIGN TOURISTS IN 2024, UP 50% FROM 2023

KENYA’S foreign tourist arrivals are projected to reach 3 million in 2024, a significant increase from the 2 million recorded in 2023, according to Alfred Mutua, Cabinet Secretary for the Ministry of Tourism and Wildlife.

‘The increase in numbers means more money for the country and many new jobs, especially for our youths, and business growth,’ Mutua stated in a release on Thursday.

Tourism and wildlife sectors are among Kenya’s largest foreign exchange earners and employers, with 80 percent of the workforce being youth. Mutua noted that the tourism sector is experiencing high bookings with minimal cancellations, mostly related to events due to recent protests over the high cost of living.

In 2023, the tourism sector contributed approximately KSh353bn ($2.7bn) to the Kenyan economy. This year’s upward trend brings the country closer to its target of earning $5.4bn annually from tourism in the next few years.

Mutua emphasised the importance of a secure and predictable environment for the leisure industry, urging an end to ongoing protests sparked by the controversial Finance Bill introduced in parliament on June 18.

‘We are fortunate not to have seen a major dent or cancellation as a result of recent events,’ Mutua remarked. ‘However, if the unrest continues, it will negatively impact the sector, reducing our earnings, potentially causing job losses, and freezing new opportunities, especially for graduates aiming to join the tourism and wildlife sectors for their livelihood.’

Despite the challenges, Kenya’s tourism sector remains resilient, contributing significantly to economic growth and job creation. The anticipated rise in tourist arrivals is expected to further bolster these gains.

By trojan news

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