The Herald (Harare)

27 November 2012

Zimbabwe: UNWTO Assembly Preps On Track, Says Mzembi

GOVERNMENT says it is satisfied with the country's state of preparedness to host the United Nations World Tourism Organisation General Assembly next year. Tourism Minister Walter Mzembi yesterday said the preparations were going on well.

He said some UNWTO inspectors were expected in the country in January next year to assess the progress.

"So far so good, we are comfortable with the progress in terms of preparing for the general assembly meeting," said Minister Mzembi.

"We are doing well but of course this is subject to the findings of the inspectors that are coming in January to assess the state of preparedness."

Minister Mzembi said Government had set side 1 200 hectares of land for uptake by investors in preparation for the crucial event.

"The land may be used for construction of new hotels and many other structures for tourism," he said.

The minister last week attended a technical meeting on preparations at the Harare Safari Lodge.

He then left for the 94th session of the executive council in Cempeche Mexico where Zimbabwe's state of preparedness was said to be "on track".

Minister Mzembi said in December he would meet his Zambian counterpart and inform the nations on the progress made.

The joint meeting, according to the minister, will be convened in preparation for the tri-lateral meeting with the UNWTO in Madrid end of January.

In May, there will be an additional executive council meeting in Serbia where a full comprehensive report on the state of preparedness shall be tabled before the 60-member executive council.

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