This research project was conducted across Tanzania from January to July in 2021. The project aimed to draw insight from different actors’ lived experiences and perceptions across the tourism sector value chain, including the relevant government departments, sector regulatory bodies, and representative industry practitioners.
As part of this process: 35 tourism service providers across the tourism value chain were interviewed. This included owners/managers of tourism enterprises and entities focused on accommodation services; transport services, excursion services, tour guide services and membership associations.
In adopting an inductive qualitative approach, we produced a unique, timely and a holistic post Covid-19 response policy framework that is context relevant and actor-centred. This occurred by evaluating actors' lived experiences, which enabled us to identify context-specific challenges brought on by Covid-19 and the associated sector responses. Second, we mapped the challenges and responses faced against the support arrangements arising from existing policy interventions. Finally, we then used the insights gathered (while also reviewing relevant measures of best practice from other countries dealing with the impacts of Covid-19) to develop a contextually relevant tourism sector recovery plan for Tanzania.
Tanzanian Minister for Tourism and Natural Resources Hon. Dr. Damas Ndumbaro delivering the dissemination event opening speech.
The first recommendation was to enforce and adhere to globally aligned public health measures to restore the trust and allay the fears of international tourists visiting Tanzania.
The second recommendation was what we term government buffering. This refers to the need for the Tanzania government to strengthen or ‘buffer’ the tourism industry to retain its previous levels of operation. The four areas of government ‘buffering’ identified by the research were 1.) Implementation of pro tourism tax incentives 2.) Reduction of tourism related fees (airport landing charges, entry charges to national parks etc.) 3.) increased marketing and promotion of Tanzania’s tourism resources and 4.) Relief support for affected tourism entities i.e. relief grants and 0% interest loans.
The third recommendation is what we term ‘cross sectoral resource pooling’. This recommendation urged the need for collaboration between private and public sector organisations(public private partnerships) to leverage financial and non-financial resources for mutual benefit.
The final strategy was to focus on diversifying the Tanzanian tourism sectors target markets through three mechanisms 1.) diversification of service offerings 2.) Focus on non-tradition domestic and regional markets and 3.) incentivisation of visitation to Tanzania.