Addis Ababa — Tourism Ethiopia announced that it has launched special investment incentives at seven different Ethiopian tourist destinations.
The destinations provided with special incentives are Abjata Shala Lakes, Bale Mountains, Wonchi Lake, Geralta Mountain, Semein Mountains, Nech Sar Park, and the Ert Ale active volcano.
Tourism Ethiopia Director-General, Sileshi Girma, told ENA that the agricultural activities carried out for over 3,000 years in Ethiopia have not lifted the people out of poverty.
And the industry sector is not as successful as desired.
It is also difficult to compete in the global market with high-tech and affordable services in the education and health sectors, he argued.
However, there is opportunity that could easily move Ethiopia forward in the tourism sector, the director-general added.
He noted that Ethiopia, with its 3,000 years history, is a leading African country in terms of culture, natural resources and heritage. Taking advantage of this opportunity is an alternative to lift the country out of poverty.
"I believe that our future is in the tourism sector where we can generate income, create jobs and benefit the people as there is huge potential in the sector. Therefore, I believe that tourism will make a difference if it can be sold directly in the market."
Sileshi revealed that the government has given special attention to the tourism sector, adding that the Ethiopian Investment Board has accordingly approved special investment incentives to develop 7 tourist destinations.
He pointed out that the special incentives include tax exemption for 5 years and duty-free import.