The Zimbabwe government wants to bring a Disneyland theme park to Victoria Falls, with the country’s tourism minister inviting foreign investors to pitch in for what would be the first Disney theme park on the African continent.
Despite the fact there has been no official confirmation on any such development from Disney, President Robert Mugabe’s government is keen to boost current tourism numbers by five times. He sees the proposed park, along with new hotels and a convention centre in an US$300m (€224.2m, £193.3m) entertainment complex at Victoria Falls as the way to do that.
Tourism minister Walter Mzembi first touted the idea of a theme park alongside his entertainment complex 12 months ago. Now the plans will move a step forward after gaining government approval to develop a 12sq km (4.6sq mile) area of land near Victoria Falls Airport.
To accommodate increased visitor numbers for the area, the government is also planning to invest US$150m (€112m, £96.6m) in expanding the nearby airport to accommodate larger aircrafts.
Zimbabwe’s Financial Gazette says annual tourism revenues could jump as high as US$5bn (£3bn, €3.7bn) by 2020, compared to around US$700m (£422m, €527m) now.
By : Tom Anstey
22 August 2014