Mozambique amongst biggest tourist destinations, says the Independent newspaper

9 January 2007

Maputo, Mozambique, 9 Jan – British newspaper, The Independent, has reported that Mozambique is one of the world’s biggest tourist destinations for 2007.

“Mozambique is now in peace, but it will still take time for tourists to consider the African country, which was once devastated by war, as a serious tourist destination,” the paper said.

The Independent focused on Ibo Island, one of the 32 islands of the Quirimbas archipelago in Cabo Delgado province, as one of Mozambique’s main attractions.

In the same article, the newspaper also pointed to Montenegro, Madagascar, Zanzibar, Mauritius, Egypt, the Seychelles and Australia as tourist destinations for 2007.

Figures from the Mozambican Tourism Ministry showed that in 2005 Mozambique welcomed 700,000 tourists, whilst in 2000 it received just 5,000 tourists per year.

Tourism minister, Fernando Sumbana recently told Mozambican newspaper, Notícias that Mozambique expected to have 1.2 million foreign tourists per year by 2013.

In the last few years, the tourism sector has contributed around 2.5 percent of Mozambique’s gross domestic product (GDP).

In 2008 tourism is expected to net the state coffers US$157 million.

Sumbana said that the biggest challenge over the next few year was to “develop and position Mozambique as a world class tourist destination.”

Figures from the World Tourism Organization, published by Mozambican news agency AIM, showed that in 2006 The Mozambican tourism market saw the greatest growth in the world, with a rise of around 37 percent in relation to 2005. (macauhub)