Technology and innovation; spotlight of ATLF 2022
The 5th annual Africa Tourism Leadership Forum (ATLF) has emphasized the need for the African continent to leverage technology and innovation for the future of its tourism sector.
This was the key focus when ministers, stakeholders, tourists, and journalists from over 50 African countries, Europe and America converged in Gaborone, Botswana, from October 24 to October 26 to discuss the future of African tourism.
The event organized by Africa Tourism Partners (in collaboration with the UNWTO, BDO, and the Government of Botswana) recorded high attendance from diverse cultural backgrounds across the continent.
The three-day event focused on investment, innovation, optimizing digital and technologies for impactful business results, making intra-Africa travel initiatives through critical tourism infrastructure, functional Pan-African Private Sector Alliance, collaborative approach to regional tourism development and marketing, and augmenting Africa’s tourism marketing by leveraging metaverse in hospitality, travel, and real estate.
Keynote speakers included the President of Botswana, Mokgweetsi Masisi, who believed innovation and collaboration could help Africa’s tourism sector progress in the face of ‘fundamental shifts’.
“A new generation of tourists is emerging, and the hospitality and tourism sector is undergoing fundamental shifts in the way it operates, occasioned by changing global economies as well as government policies to operational efficiencies, and the need for seamless technology to delivering a flawless guest experience,” he noted in his address on Tuesday, October 25, 2022.
“To adapt to constant change, industries are looking to adapt strategies to future-proof their businesses and to navigate rapidly changing technological landscapes.”
He further stated: “I, therefore, urge you to take this time to have an in-depth analysis of the trends and forecasts influencing travel patterns and how you can take advantage of the opportunities that they bring to us in the tourism sector.”
“Working together, forging partnerships and collaborations is key to building sustainable tourism economies,” he concluded.
For the CEO of Africa Tourism Partners, Kwakye Donkor, this year’s event is the best yet.
He stated on the last day: “A destination winning a bid to host this event is one thing, but the hard work starts when the institution who is championing gets the approval and permissions.”
“We know that post-Covid, things are very tough everywhere and one individual has made sure that working with her subordinates, this event has become, based on our measurements, the best ATLF so far,” he disclosed.
Africa Tourism Leadership Forum (ATLF) is a Pan-African dialogue platform. It brings together key stakeholders of Africa’s travel, tourism, hospitality, and aviation sectors to network, share insights, and devise strategies for intra-Africa travel and tourism growth across the continent, whilst enhancing the brand equity of “Destination Africa’’.
It is also the only Forum of its kind in Africa that highlights tourism as a major economic pillar to diversify African economies. The Forum in convened by Africa Tourism Partners and BDO South Africa.
Botswana is confirmed to host next year’s Africa Tourism Leadership Forum. The official dates and activities schedule for the 6th Africa Tourism Leadership Forum & Awards is yet to be announced.