Kenya set up $5 million kitty for post coronavirus impact as tourists' hotspot, Malindi, comes under attack

Malindi, Kenya.  (TripAdvisor)
  • The Ministry of Tourism has set aside Sh 500 million ($5 million) for its post Coronavirus (Covid-19) recovery plan.
  • Malindi, one of Kenya’s tourist hotspot is already feeling the effects of coronavirus.  
  • The town, a favourite of Italians, is especially struggling following several direct flights from Italy cancelled over fears of the deadly virus which World Health Organisation has declared a pandemic.

The Kenyan government has set up a kitty to tackle Coronavirus ripple effects especially on its sensitive tourism industry.

The Ministry of Tourism has set aside Sh 500 million ($5 million) for its post Coronavirus (Covid-19) recovery plan.

Speaking during a meeting held in Nairobi which brought together Nairobi hoteliers, tour operators, travel agents, and airline representatives, Tourism and Wildlife Cabinet Secretary Najib Balala said the government is prepared.

“Part of this money will be used to restore destination confidence to ensure that Kenya remains as a preferred travel destination globally while the rest will be used for the post Coronavirus recovery strategy in all our key source market” Said CS Balala, KBC reported.

The meeting had been convened by the Ministry of Tourism to discuss the preparedness of the government in relation to tourism following the global Covid-19 crisis.

“The Government is prepared and committed to ensure that covid-19 does not get into the country a reason why President Uhuru Kenyatta formed a taskforce to coordinate Kenya’s preparedness, prevention and response to the disease” he added.

Apart from the isolation centre at Mbagathi Hospital, every County will have an isolation ward for COVID-19.

Meanwhile, Malindi, Kenya’s tourist hotspot is already feeling the effects of coronavirus. The cancellation of international flights into the tourist town of Malindi has affected tourism activities in the area causing continued decline in the local economy.

The town, a favourite of Italians, is especially struggling following several direct flights from Italy suspended over fears of the deadly virus which World Health Organisation has declared a pandemic.

Speaking on Monday while launching the second phase of the Sustainable Urban Economic Development (SUED) for Malindi town, Kilifi Governor Amason Kingi, said the town has for ages been depending entirely on the tourism industry for its economic growth but over the past five years, the sector has been declining.

“Experts came to Malindi to study the activities in the town and found it fit to be selected for SUED so that faster development can be achieved. Despite the challenges, there are still hopes that development can be achieved in the town in other sectors apart from tourism,” he said

Italy has been investing in the town and has greatly enhanced economic growth for the area and the country at large.

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