The Minister of Environment and Tourism Hon. Netumbo Nandi-Ndaitwah hosted her counterpart Hon. Martial Mathieu Kani, Minister of Tourism Industry andLeisures of the Republic of Congo for a working visit from 24-28 June 2010.
The peoples of Namibia and Congo have a long-standing cooperation dating backto the time of Namibia’s struggle for independence.With Namibia’s independence the cooperation between the two countries was strengthened. An agreement of cooperation is signed between the two countries
and an exchange of visits both at the heads of state, ministerial and official levels have taken place.During the discussions, the Ministers focused on Parks management, Eco-tourism development, promotion of tourism in Parks and Eco-tourism and community livelihoods.
Both sides agreed to exchange tourist information including promotional material, brochures and statistics in both countries. They further agreed to encourage participation in tourism fairs, cultural festivals and events of common interests held in both countries, and to exchange visits by tourism and park officials,journalists and media representatives to familiarise themselves with the different tourism potentials in both countries and to cooperate in training and skills development in tourism.
Within the framework of the Agreement of Cooperation between Namibia and Congo, the Ministers committed themselves to develop and finalise a Memorandum of Understanding on tourism cooperation as a matter of urgency.The Congolese Minister undertook a visit to Namibia’s flagship park, the Etosha National Park where he was briefed on park management by the staff of the Ministry of Environment and Tourism. He also visited the Etosha Ecological Research Institute where he was introduced to various research activities that are ongoing in the centre. Representatives of the Namibia Wildlife Resorts (NWR) provided insights on the hospitality aspects of the Namibian Tourism sector and informed the Minister on a number of tourism products that NWR offers to theirguests.
Both Ministers expressed their willingness and interest in learning from each other on the best practice in terms of tourism development and management. Both sides further identified a number of concrete ways to achieve this.The Congolese Minister expressed his gratitude and appreciation for the warm welcome and hospitality accorded to him and his delegation during their stay in Namibia.