Finance Minister Says Namibia, Ethiopia Need to Exploit ‘Tourism Potential

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Addis Ababa ,February 15/2020 (ENA) Ethiopia and Namibia need to exploit their untapped tourism potential, Namibia’s Finance Minister Calle Schlettwein said.

Finance Minister Schlettwein told ENA that both countries have numerous tourist sites that attract visitors from around the world.

Namibia, a country located in Sub-Saharan Africa in the south western corner of the continent is a unique destination that offers classic landscapes, abundant biodiversity and bountiful unspoiled wildlife, rich cultural diversity, with a diverse range of flora and fauna, giving tourists an unforgettable experience.

With 22 national parks covering over 17 percent of its terrestrial area, Namibia has established an impressive system of national parks.

Similarly, Ethiopia is a country with huge tangible and intangible tourist resources. Its historic heritages, the topography and the religious sites, monuments and cave paintings that date back to prehistory, the amazing archeological findings could make Ethiopia center of world tourism.

According to the minister, tourism and service sectors are target areas for both countries, in addition to various areas of cooperation.  

“We have similar large potential in tourism; and if we cooperate in transport and logistics matters, that would bring about opportunities in tourism and service sectors,” Schlettwein said, adding that  “Namibia has the same objectives and target like Ethiopia.”

Currently, both countries are facing the challenges of diversifying their economy, improving productive capacity, and improving education system that can develop necessary skills for becoming industrialized nations, he noted.

The minister pointed out that these are the areas Ethiopia and Namibia operate closely together and need to diversify economic cooperation in the future.

The countries also cooperate in health and education sector,“but coming from the financial sector, I believe that trade and financial cooperations make us work together closely.”

He stressed that the countries should focus on improving their capacity of regional and continental value chain through exporting finished goods to global market.

Even if Schlettwein believes that the countries are enjoying excellent bilateral relations, yet he “looks forward to the implementation of the continental free trade arrangement that enables all to share the opportunities that inter Africa is going to give us.”