Addis Ababa, Ethiopia – The Ministry of Culture and Tourism, while briefing about its first quarter budget year performance, has said that it has revised its plan related to the number of visitors expected to come to Ethiopia. The revised plan has embraced one million visitors compared to the previous plan 1.5 million (due to the occurrence of violence that hinders smooth flow of tourism).
It said nation has managed to generate over 870 million USD revenue out of over 230 thousand visitors the quarter year. The amount has showed slight decline compared to last year same time by seven million USD. Similarly, the number of visitors has decreased by close to 2,000.
It is to be reminisced that the Ministry has got new female Minister, Dr. Hirut Wolde-Mariam. It is part of the endeavor of government to effect new transformation. The Ministry said it will let no stone unturned to help develop the sector (enabling the tourism sector to generate tremendous revenue to realize the poverty alleviation effort of the country).
The previous conflict that flared up in Oromiya and Amhara states had impinged on the well-oiled tourism industry of the country known for its attraction of tourists, which in turn curtails the income of tour operators, hotels and the various machines of revenue.Noticeably, this budding industry cannot register its successful results in the past four months due to the problem that arise in those localities.
Until now tourism has become the most important part of the national economy. The sector has been growing at an annual average of about 10 percent over the past decade as Ethiopia has been attracting increasing amount of foreign direct investment (FDI). It is estimated that tourism is contributing about 4.5 percent of the gross domestic product (GDP), or close to three billion USD. The contribution of the tourism sector is as tremendous as employing 1.5 million people and enabling lots of families to earn their living from it.
Tourism has long been major area of strength for Ethiopian economy. For instance, Ethiopia has pocketed close to two billion birr annually in the first Growth and Transformation Plan (GTP-1). As part of GTP-2, the 2015/2016 budget year has also witnessed the arrival of over 910,000 tourists to various destinations of the country, and it enabled to earn three billion Birr.
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