7 November 2012

Zambia: 'National Airline a Must'

GOVERNMENT has intensified its programme to re-establish a national airline to help boost the tourism industry.

Tourism and Arts Deputy Minister, David Phiri said the country's tourism sector would not attain its desired position without a national airline.

Mr Phiri was speaking in London where he led a Zambian delegation at the 2012 World Tourism Market.

"The question of connectivity is a central factor in the development of Zambia's tourism sector. This can only come about where there is a viable national airline. There is consensus in both Government and industry that Zambia needs a viable national airline," he said.

This is contained in a statement released yesterday by Press Secretary at the Zambian High Commission in London, United Kingdom (UK), Amos Chanda.

While in London, Mr Phiri attended a Ministerial Session that discussed a range of issues aimed at boosting the global tourism industry.

The Deputy Minister said Government had provided attractive tax incentives for the next five years for Zambians wishing to develop tourism infrastructure in national parks.

"What the new Government has done is unparalleled in the history of our country and we are determined as a ministry not to fail the President in his bold and broad vision to rejuvenate this important sector of the economy.

"But these efforts will bear fruits once the problem of connectivity is resolved through the establishment of a national carrier," he said.

Mr Phiri's delegation includes Permanent Secretary Charity Mwansa, Zambia Tourism Board managing director Felix Chaila and other senior members of staff.

Mr Phiri was yesterday expected to host a cocktail for tour operators and leading media outlets in London at the Zambia Stand at Excel Centre, the UK's premier exhibition arena.

The World Travel Market is a global networking exhibition staged annually in London as the leading global event for the travel industry providing a vibrant business event with a diverse range of destinations and industry sectors to the UK and international travel professionals.

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