"The World and Japan" Database (Project Leader: TANAKA Akihiko)
Database of Japanese Politics and International Relations
National Graduate Institute for Policy Studies (GRIPS); Institute for Advanced Studies on Asia (IASA), The University of Tokyo

[Title] The Fifth Africa-Asia Business Forum (AABF V) Chairs' Summary on Policy Recommendations for the Sustainable Development and Promotion of Tourism in Africa

[Place] Kampala, Uganda
[Date] 15-17 June 2009
[Source] Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Japan
[Full text]

Participants from 29 African countries, and 6 Asian and Middle East countries including representatives of the private and public sector and the civil society organizations, met in Kampala, Uganda for the Fifth Africa-Asia Business Forum - AABF V - from 15 to 17 June 2009 in order to discuss, within the context of the Fourth Tokyo International Conference on African Development (TICAD IV) Yokohama Action Plan, the issues and challenges currently confronting the tourism industry across the continent of Africa, and to learn from the experiences of partner countries and organizations, how to successfully plan, develop and market tourism products and overcome constraints including health and safety. They took note of specific actions to be pursued under the TICAD IV Yokohama Action Plan, including the need to:

encourage and assist African countries' efforts to address security, hospitality-management, infrastructure and environmental constraints to tourism development, including through tourism training programs;

support tourism operators to increase familiarization with African destinations and to improve knowledge of the continent and its tourist attractions;

take advantage of the opportunities provided by the 2010 FIFA World Cup in South Africa; and

support long-term tourism promotion through events such as travel fairs.

In this context, and in an effort to provide impetus to the implementation of these activities, the participants made the following policy recommendations, emphasizing the importance of uniting and harmonizing all stakeholders under public-private partnerships in a holistic manner:

1.There should be a concentrated focus on the development and promotion of tourism from Asian countries, including Japan, to Africa for the 2010 FIFA World Cup and beyond;

2.A targeted marketing strategy should be identified based on analysis on trends, profile and orientation of potential inbound travelers to Africa;

3.The governments in Africa are encouraged to make use of the various funding facilities available under the Yokohama Action Plan, and other cooperation programmes, to carry out programmes/projects/activities aimed at promoting tourism as an element of boosting economic growth and poverty alleviation while enabling conservation and environmental protection in Africa. Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA), United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), World Bank Group, relevant international organizations such as the United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO), the World Tourism Organization (UNWTO), and partners including within the African continent are ready to support in this regard to build African capacity, at community, destination, national and regional levels. This would include implementation of master-plan studies and feasibility studies on various aspects of tourism, dispatch of tourism development experts and language instructors, mounting of tourism promotion seminars and workshops, production and distribution of educational and awareness-raising materials and community-based pro-poor tourism programs/projects. The "One- Village One-Product" (OVOP) initiative initiated under cooperation by Japan External Trade Organization (JETRO) and JICA should be expanded further for the development and overseas marketing of local products by communities. The programme developed by UNIDO, "One Village Industrial Cluster", an application of OVOP, should complement the OVOP by enhancing productivity of African rural community;

4.The private sector in the African tourism industry should be supported through capacity building, forging of business linkages and public-private partnerships, and access to financial facilities. Relevant institutions including the World Bank Group, UNDP, JICA, the Japan Bank for International Cooperation (JBIC), the African Development Bank and African regional development banks, as well as national and private banks, should actively disseminate information about their applicable facilities to support the private sector both in Africa and Asia to promote tourism in Africa;

5.FDI related to the African tourism industry development should be seriously promoted. The specific focus of such investment should be on the building of international standard hotels and lodges, restaurants, airline services and value addition to African commodities, etc as well as an enabling environment in terms of policy, legal and regulatory frameworks. The private sector of Japan and other Asian countries are encouraged to make use of the various financial facilities especially those made available under the Yokohama Action Plan. UNDP's Growing Sustainable Business (GSB) mechanism should be utilized at the country-level for tourism value chain public-private partnerships projects and other relevant AABF opportunities. Relevant international organizations such as UNIDO and UNWTO should further make efforts to build capacity of the African tourism sector to attract increased FDI;

6.Recognizing the significance of Africa's own initiative such as the UNWTO programme on sustainable tourism development initiated by Benin, inter-African cooperation should be further promoted;

7.African countries with the support of TICAD co-organizers and other partners should make collective efforts to strengthen regional capacities of all five sub-regions of the continent so that they can promote, in Japan and other Asian countries, their tourist attractions in the region in clusters;

8.The increase of international air services, including charter services, directly between Asian airports, especially those in Japan, and Africa should be encouraged with a view to capturing the opportunities provided by the FIFA World Cup;

9.Further reconnaissance missions to African countries should be organized preferably before the 2010 FIFA World Cup in order to tap into the tourism potential and to identify new tourist destinations likely to be of interest to Japanese and other Asian tourists;

10.The media from Asia, especially TV broadcasters and popular magazines, should be encouraged to increase coverage of Africa - with special focus on tourism destinations, attractions, UNESCO World Heritage Sites, etc. In this regard, further efforts should also be made by the African community overall to improve Africa's image and promote greater awareness of the continent's many tourism attractions;

11.Security concerns of travelers to Africa should be given utmost attention by all relevant stakeholders in their sustainable development activities and tourism promotion efforts. Travel Information on African countries issued by the governments of Japan and other Asian countries participating in AABF V could take into account the efforts by African countries to promote tourism in respective country, while ensuring safety of travelers; and

12.TICAD co-organizers will monitor the progress of the above-mentioned activities and incorporate it into the tourism development section of annual progress reports on the implementation of Yokohama Action Plan which will be presented at Annual TICAD Ministerial Follow-up Meetings.