DAR ES SALAAM, May 7 (Xinhua) -- An assessment of Tanzania's tourism industry after the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic has shown that the number of tourists visiting the country will drop from an estimated 1,867,000 to 437,000 annually, a cabinet minister told parliament on Thursday.
Hamisi Kigwangalla, the Minister for Natural Resources and Tourism, said the drop in tourist arrivals followed the suspension of international flights from America, Europe and Asia in the wake of the pandemic.
Kigwangalla said the assessment also showed that the earnings from the tourism sector were expected to drop dramatically this year due to the pandemic.
"The drop in the earnings will hugely affect some conservation institutions under the Ministry of Natural Resources and Tourism," he told the House in the capital Dodoma when he tabled his ministry's budget proposals for the 2020/2021 financial year.
He added that as a result of the COVID-19 crisis, direct employment in the tourism sector will go down from 623,000 jobs to 146,000 jobs.
Kigwangalla said the ministry was working closely with various stakeholders in the tourism sector to put in place strategies aimed at saving the sector from further deterioration. Enditem