Zimbabwe Tourism Authority Chief Executive, Ms. Winnie Muchanyuka has urged the Tourism and Hospitality Industry to collaborate with the government in bidding for Meetings Incentives Conferences Exhibitions Tourism (MICE) events.
Muchanyuka was speaking at the 2022 edition of the Hospitality Association of Zimbabwe Congress which kicked off in Victoria Falls yesterday.
“I would like to encourage the hospitality industry to continue working closely with the ZTA and other government arms to jointly formulate strategies to bid for more MICE business. We must find strategic ways to collaborate in our quest to promote Zimbabwe as a first-choice MICE destination,” said Muchanyuka.
Muchanyuka added that there was a need for the hospitality sector to also focus on domestic MICE events. “There is a lot of potential for us to create more MICE business locally. We just need to have a more collaborative approach as a sector. If you look at our statistics for this year, you will find out that MICE contributed quite significantly to the general recovery of the sector,” she added.
Muchanyuka took time to break down the statistical data for MICE business so far in the year. “The first half of 2022 saw 5705 functions being hosted while 354553 participants attended the MICE events at a national level. The Harare, Bulawayo, and Mutare/Vumba regions dominated most in terms of functions held, accounting for a combined 71% at the national level,” she said.
“Harare Province continues to dominate the MICE business followed by Bulawayo and Mutare/Vumba. This is due to the higher concentration of hotels in the region and therefore varied hosting capacities by hotels,” she added.
Muchanyuka said Information derived from hoteliers indicated that most of the MICE business was generated from the domestic market which was mostly constituted of government agencies, the corporate sector, and nongovernmental organisations.
“MICE business continues to be the dominating force in generating room occupancies for hotels,” she said.
Ms. Winnie also highlighted the importance of looking closely at investment opportunities that lay in the sector. She urged the hospitality sector to heed the government’s call on the need to revamp the tourism sector through greenfield and Brownfield investments.