Nairobi’s MICE tourism sees huge growth potential

Published on : Wednesday, June 12, 2019

Nairobi’s meetings, incentives, conferencing and exhibitions (MICE) tourism has grown a lot over the last few years to emerge as an important revenue contributor in the tourism industry.


The number of international conferences and delegates grew by 6.8 per cent and 5.6 per cent, respectively last year. On the other hand, local conferences and delegates grew 7.9 per cent and 3.7 per cent, respectively.


Some of the high-profile conferences held in the country last year include: The first ordinary session of the African Union Ministerial Sub-Committee on Tourism, The 79th International Skal World Congress, The Sustainable Blue Economy and the African Hotel Investment Forum.


Hence, MICE performance saw tourism earnings grow 31.3 per cent last year to sh157.4 billion from Sh119.9 billion, with the number of international visitors growing 14 per cent to 2.03 million tourists.


PrideInn Hotels managing director Hasnain Noorani said, “Kenya’s MICE sector has taken steady steps to grow and accelerate the development of its offerings across the leisure and business tourism spectrums, giving international business visitors ample opportunity to enjoy authentic tourism experiences, both inside and beyond the venue walls.”


However, Noorani added that more work needs to be done for fortifying Mombasa as a MICE destination to increase business tourist numbers at the Coast.


Last week, Nairobi was named Africa’s Leading Business Travel Destination as the Kenyatta International Convention Centre (KICC) won a top award as Africa’s Leading Meetings & Conference destination at this year’s 26th Annual World Travel Award (WTA).


Nairobi beat other top African destinations including Durban, Cape Town, and Kigali.
Kenya’s conference tourism is expected to grow even more with a number of conference bids that the country is placing to host.


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