Sanganayi/Hlanganani Expo grows by 44 pct

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PREPARATIONS for the 10th Sanganayi/Hlanganani Expo, the country’s premier travel and tourism exhibition, are at an advanced stage with organizers saying the event has grown by a 44 percent margin from last year in terms of exhibitors.
Addressing a press conference in Harare, ZTA Chief Executive, Karikoga Kaseke said the continued growth of the expo was an endorsement of destination Zimbabwe by both regional and international tourism players.
“The 10th edition of the Sanganayi/Hlanganani expo to be held in Bulawayo will have 340 exhibitors from 236 last year, which translates to a 44 percent growth and it is another endorsement of the destination Zimbabwe,” he said.
Kaseke said Bulawayo exhibitors had responded in a great manner, with 150 of the total companies exhibiting at the event, the second biggest in Africa, coming from the City of Kings and Queens.
“That is a very positive development considering that last year we had only 95 companies from Bulawayo,” he said.
The ZTA boss said there was also a significant rise in the number of first time exhibitors, with 85 companies coming to the show for the first time this year. 
“Last year we had only eight countries with 30 companies, but this year we are having 11 countries with 22 foreign companies exhibiting. These include SOUTH Africa Tourism Authority, who are coming for the first time since the inception of the exhibition,” he said.
Kaseke said this year the exhibition will be introducing a new concept in the form of an exclusive Small to Medium Enterprises (SME’s) hall.
“We have reserved Hall 5 to house SME’s but mainly these people will be women.  This is a concept which we borrowed from South Africa’s Indaba; we have done exactly the same, following what our brothers in SA are doing,” he said.
He said 224 buyers and 24 media personnel were expected, adding the ZTA had been allocated $97 000 by treasury for their air tickets from the $485 000 availed by Treasury.
Finance Minister, Patrick Chinamasa will be the guest of honour and his presence was expected to give a sense of business to the expo and also get the Minister to understand the role tourism played in the country’s economy.