, NAIROBI, Kenya, Feb 24 – Top managers of over 100 leading Chinese tour companies will visit Kenya beginning Tuesday with interest in selling the country as a tourist destination.
The visit follows a successful collaborative promotion between the Kenya Tourism Board (KTB) and Kenya’s Embassy in China held early this year.
Kenya’s Ambassador to China Michael Kinyanjui said the tour organized by Polaris Safari Limited in collaboration with Uniway Travel will go a long way in equipping the Chinese tour operators and agents with first-hand experience on Kenya as a destination.
Kinyanjui said Kenya will take advantage of the Chinese market that has immense potential having recorded over 100 million in-bound tourists in 2014.
On his part, KTB Managing Director Muriithi Ndegwa said with direct flights to China where Kenya Airways operates three times a week from Guangzhou to Nairobi, the market is poised to grow to the next level.
“Following our reassurance campaigns in Beijing and Shanghai together with our embassy earlier this year, major Chinese tour operators are beginning to show renewed interest in selling Kenyan destinations,” says Ndegwa.
China is among the top 10 tourist source markets to the country and figures up to November last year saw the market drop by 9.8 percent to record 31,486 arrivals down from 34,923 over the same period in 2013.
Ndegwa attributed the drop that was reported across all the markets to insecurity and the Ebola scare but noted that the market is expected to regain its upward growth trajectory with reassurance campaigns.
KTB has lined up key exhibitions that Kenya will be participating in including the International Luxury Travel Mart Exhibition and the Beijing International Tourism Expo and additionally consumer events that will see KTB engage the Chinese media.