SWAKOPMUND: The Namibian Tourism Board (NTB) has taken the initiative to broadly consult with various stakeholders of the industry, regarding tour guide regulations at a workshop here on Wednesday.
The Governor of the Erongo Region, Cleophas Mutjavikua, stated at the opening of the workshop, that through this consultation, the tour guide regulations document will be refined so that it becomes an effective tool in addressing some of the identified bottlenecks in the tourism sector.
“The Namibian Government recognises the importance of tourism industry, in particular the tour guiding as a career and as means to give the people a better future,” the Governor said.
Various stakeholders who included the Ministry of Environment and Tourism (MET), tour guide operators and traditional authorities, attended the workshop under the theme, ‘Symbol of quality tour guiding in the land of the brave’.
Mutjavikua continued to say, that the achievements of the NTB in as far as putting regulations for tour guiding services in Namibia cannot be over emphasized.
“Tourism industry is one the priority economic sectors that earn foreign currency which in turn can boost the economy. It is therefore important that this workshop and the subsequent ones planned for Keetmanshoop and Windhoek yield the desired results,” he added.
The tour guide regulations are meant to register tour guides operating in Namibia, regulate tour guides operation, protect the industry from fly by-night tour guides and recognise tour guides qualification obtained outside Namibia, amongst others.
According to the Governor, that from this workshop, tour guide regulations are expected to receive undivided attention in order for the inputs of the stakeholders present, to be a result of meaning and well thought deliberations.
“Your failure to commit yourself to this workshop and contribute meaningfully, will lead to a failure of addressing the identified bottlenecks such at the lack of national tour guide regulations,” he sternly noted. Furthermore, the NTB has done their part of drafting the regulations as well as the planning of this consultative workshop; however the stakeholders should now play their role in shaping the economic direction of the tourism industry.