GOVERNMENT plans to construct a multi-million Kwacha tourism university in Livingstone, says Tourism Minister Jean Kapata.
Ms Kapata said Government through her ministry has already identified a piece of land for the project in the tourist capital.
She said her ministry and the Hospitality Training Institute (HTTI) have advanced preparations for the project.
ZANIS reports that Ms Kapata was speaking at a gala night held at the Zambia Air Force (ZAF) mess at the weekend where she officially launched the 2015 Livingstone Arts and Culture Festival (LICAF).
The annual event sought to market the country’s tourism to both local as well as foreign tourists through arts and culture.
Ms. Kapata said festivals like LICAF popularize festival tourism which she said had become popular in the world as a vehicle through which the tourism sector could become a major contributor to any country’s economic development.
The minister noted that LICAF and festival tourism in general are what the PF government envisioned as vehicles of poverty reduction and job creation as they provide an opportunity for people in Livingstone to provide goods and services.
She revealed that Government was also in the process of signing a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with the Seychelles government aimed at forging collaborative programmes in culture, tourism training and enhanced capacity building.
She hailed the organisers of the festival for successfully holding the event adding that it was in line with government’s resolve to ensure that the art component of tourism is not neglected as the two go together.
And Tourism permanent secretary Stephen Mwansa said collaborating countries such as Seychelles and Zimbabwe had been supportive in ensuring that the LICAF 2015 was a success.
He revealed that all the participating countries including Mozambique have vowed to support Zambia in future festivities which he said Zambia would reciprocate.
And Zambia Tourism Board managing director Felix Chaila thanked his staff for their tireless efforts in making the event possible.
Quoting late South African President Nelson Mandela’s adage that: “It all looks impossible until it’s done,” Mr Chaila said it looked bleak at the beginning but it became possible that the event was finally held.
He thanked collaborating partners and organizations such as ZAWA, Hotels Board and Livingstone International University for Tourism among others for their tireless contribution to the successful holding of the event.
Meanwhile, the Zambia National Dance troupe received the best dancing group award followed by the dancers from Seychelles.