According to Hospitality Association of Zimbabwe (HAZ), Victoria Falls chapter chairperson, Jonathan Hudson, Victoria Falls is ready to host Routes Africa 2014 forum for the first time. He said while there were no major refurbishments to be expected for the forum to be held from June 22-24, this year, indications were that hosting the event would see the country derive major economic benefits. Routes Africa, the largest route development forum for the entire African region is a forum where airlines, aviation, tourism and government representatives from the continent meet to explore opportunities to develop the aviation industry. The event will be organised by the Civil Aviation Authority of Zimbabwe (CAAZ).
“As HAZ I think we are ready for the forum which will see about 400-500 delegates in attendance."
Much work was done last year as the country prepared to co-host the 20th session of the United Nations World Tourism Organisation (UNWTO) general assembly,” he said. Clement Mukwasi, a tourism executive in the resort town said the forum was also coming at a time when the country was making aggressive strides to make Zimbabwe a leading tourism destination.
“As operators we feel all is in place. UNWTO last year was a platform that is opening such avenues and we are hoping that such forums pay dividends through increased arrivals by tourists,” he said. Victoria Falls International Airport, situated 21km south of the town, provides easy access to Victoria Falls and is currently served by scheduled domestic and regional flights and charter flights from various parts of the world.
The airport is currently implementing a major infrastructure upgrading project at a total cost of $150 million including construction of a new runway, international terminal building and control tower and is expected to be completed by December 2014.
Source: The Chronicle