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Balala to lead Kenyan delegation to London fair

By | November 4th 2011

By Phillip Mwakio

Tourism Minister Najib Balala will lead a high powered Kenyan delegation to this year's 33rd annual World Travel Market.

The event kicks off on Monday in London.

Staged annually in London, World Travel Market (WTM) is a premier global event for the travel industry. It is a unique opportunity for the global travel trade to network, negotiate, and do business under one roof.

More than 152 internationally renowned exhibitors, world-class speakers and participants will attend the WTM fair, at the Excel, London.

While addressing a celebratory cocktail in his honour following his election as chairman of the United Nations World Tourism Organisation (UNWTO) Executive Council, Balala said he would lead the Kenyan team to the global event.

Favourite destination

"Participation will be in line with efforts by my ministry to showcase Kenya as a favourite long haul destination in Africa,’’ he said.

Balala told guests at the Reef Hotel who included hoteliers, business community, and diplomats Kenya is a safe place to visit.

"Despite the events across the border in Somalia, we as a Government have taken the necessary steps to prevent and deter any overflow of militia activities on Kenyan soil. We are confident a lasting solution to the Somalia problem will be found this time round,’’ he said.

Balala added that Kenya’s participation this year is aimed at showing the rest of the tourism world that it is available for business.

Avenues for co-operation

The minister both in his capacity as leader of Kenyan delegation and UNWTO Executive council chairman will be meeting a number of international delegations, representatives, travel and tourism agencies, including investors, to explore much broader avenues for co-operation with the tourism sector.

On beautification of the city, Mombasa and Coast Tourist Association Chairman Mohamed Hersi said they are awaiting the go-ahead from the Mombasa Municipal Council.

" We know for sure the municipality has its limitations. We have asked them to allow us to mobilise private sector resources to spruce up the town and give Mombasa its long lost glory of a shining city,’’ Hersi, who is also Coast Regional General Manager for Sarova Group said.

Coast PC Ernest Munyi and veteran Mombasa hotelier, Mr Kuldip Sondhi were present.

Balala will today (Friday), preside over the arrival of the first ever Russian charter flight into Moi International Airport operated by Orenair.

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