CNN and BBC to help market tourism in Zambia

The UNWTO general assembly will be held jointly in Livingstone, Zambia, and Victoria Falls Town, Zimbabwe. (Image source: John Walker/Wikimedia Commons)The UNWTO general assembly will be held jointly in Livingstone, Zambia, and Victoria Falls Town, Zimbabwe. (Image source: John Walker/Wikimedia Commons)Zambia has signed a deal with the British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) and the Cable News Network (CNN) in which the two international news agencies will begin marketing tourism in Zambia ahead of this year's United Nations World Tourism Organisation (UNWTO) general assembly

Details of the deal were disclosed following a recent meeting in Berlin, Germany, between regional heads of the BBC and CNN and Zambia's minister of tourism and arts, Sylvia Masebo.

BBC director for Africa, Katie Waxman, and CNN director for Europe, Middle East and Africa, Imran Ahmad, discussed a number of strategies with Masebo.

The two international news networks demonstrated to the minister how tourism in Zambia will be showcased to the international community and how it stands to benefit from this marketing strategy.

Zambia and Zimbabwe will co-host the 20th session of the 186-member UNWTO general assembly, in Livingstone and Victoria Falls Town respectively, from 24-29 August 2013.

The Zambia Tourist Board's (ZTB) managing director, Felix Chaila, confirmed that the contracts with BBC and CNN had already been signed.

"This is a ground-breaking development because Zambia as a preferred destination will be viewed internationally as BBC and CNN are high profile international media organisation," he said.

Meanwhile, Masebo asserted that Zambia and Zimbabwe have adequately prepared for hosting the UNWTO general assembly, with the two countries strengthening collaborative efforts at various levels as the event draws closer.

"As we stand now, Zambia and Zimbabwe are both ready to host this event," she said. "The two countries have been working in unison."

The two countries will use the UNWTO general assembly to showcase Africa as a preferred tourism destination, according to Masebo.

"We want this to even go beyond the UNWTO general assembly," she said.

Masebo has also encouraged Zambian missions abroad to market tourist attractions aggressively to increase the inflow of visitors and maximise the resulting economic benefits.

Nawa Mutumweno

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