ASSOCIATION of Women in Tourism Tanzania (AWOTTA) has partnered with the Tanzania Women Chamber of Commerce (TWCC) to introduce tourism expo aimed at promoting domestic tourism.
Tanzania Tourist Board (TTB) Research and Development Manager Gladstone Mlay said over the weekend in Dar es Salaam that the biggest local tourism dubbed 'uwandani expo' is an effort that involves women in identifying opportunities in the tourism industry.
"The new move targets to promote domestic tourism with a focus to complement government efforts in promoting economic growth and create employment opportunities," Mlay said.
He said the first meeting between the government and different stakeholders from women owned tourism companies agreed to initiate the tourism expo with TTB pledging full support on the initiative.
AWOTTA Chairperson Mary Kalikawe said it was the high time for the government and other stakeholders within the tourism industry to put more efforts in promoting domestic tourism and diversifying tourist attractions.
She said, the country is endowed with a great deal of attractions and phenomena which can serve as tourist attractions, but such opportunities are not exploited effectively for the development of the sector and the country.
"Tourism is a wide concept with most things like traditional dances, marriage ceremonies, traditional gatherings, sports, prayers, modern transport systems can be centre of attractions," she said.
She noted that, if new tourist attractions are promoted and people get rid of the notion that tourism is only visiting national parks and mountains and moving away from thinking that tourists are only coming from abroad, the country would benefit and reap more as every district in the country has unexploited attractions.
She further noted that, as a move to promote domestic tourism, the new Uwandani Expo has been introduced adding if it succeeds it will be an eye opener to local people and help stakeholders within the sector to make use of unexploited opportunities.
The TWCC Chairperson Jackline Maleko said, promoting domestic tourism and identifying new attractions was responsibility of everyone, urging Tanzanians in their respective areas to be creative by identifying attractions within their surroundings and make use of them.