Organised by Messe Berlin, the Asia’s leading travel trade shows, ITB Asia took place from 25th to 27th October 2017 at Marina Bay Sands Convention Centre in Singapore. This year marks the 10th anniversary of the show in bringing together experts within the travel trade industry from all over the world to engage in dynamic B2B discussions.
Rwanda’s participation is expected to boost the rising number of visitors from Asia and Australia and to further introduce Rwanda to new emerging markets, especially for high-end and Meetings, Incentives, Conferences and Exhibitions (MICE) visitors.
In a press conference organised in side lines of the event, media was briefed with different speakers including Lucas J Murenzi from the High Commission, KhassimBizimungu from Rwanda Development Board and Jacqui Sebageni, the Managing Director of ‘Thousand Hills Africa’.
Murenzi emphasised the determination of the Government of Rwanda to promote tourism and wild life conservation that has led to a sharp and steady increase in the numbers of visitors to Rwanda as well as tourism revenues.
On the diversity of tourism attractions and potential in Rwanda, Sebageni said that besides the flagship gorilla trekking experience, Rwanda offers a variety of other attractions in wildlife, culture and people experiences as well as MICE visitors.
She further highlighted the beauty of Rwanda’s nature and the energy of its people.
Bizimungu stated that a solid foundation has been laid at ITB Asia.
“These three days have been very fulfilling for me as a representative of Rwanda at ITB Asia. We have managed to establish business contacts with people who have shown genuine interest in selling and promoting Rwanda,” he said
Sebageni echoed her optimistic sentiments saying “ITB Asia has been a great success for me, as it has provided an introduction to this interesting, lucrative and high-growth potential market that is Asia. We found people curious and interested in Rwanda, and once they heard what we had to offer, they became even more interested. I believe we can grow the numbers from Asia and Australia quite significantly,”
Regarding efforts in conservation, like protecting endangered species and the re-introduction of Black Rhinos and Lions to Akagera National Park, Bizimungu shared RDB’s strategy of focusing on eco-tourism and involvement of local communities in the program that has so far been very fruitful.