Balala counts on convention bureau in MICE recovery

May 28, 2021 / Comments (0)

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The Tourism Ministry has committed to unlocking the value of Meetings, Incentives, Conferences, Events and Exhibitions (MICE) sector in Kenya’s rebound.

This comes as Tourism and Wildlife CS Najib Balala puts his weight behind the recently formed Kenya National Convention Bureau (KNCB), which is tasked with marketing Kenya as a MICE destination.

The ministry together with KNCB, led by its National Co-ordinator and CEO Jacinta Nzioka-Mbithi, have developed the ‘Meet in Kenya MICE Brand’ position as part of a broader strategy to diversify tourism industry into MICE.

This is meant to demonstrate what the country stands for, its suitability, facilities and qualities for hosting world class events.

According to the ministry, the meet in Kenya brand and messaging strategy will go a long way in differentiating Kenya’s business travel offer and value proposition in light of evolving traveler preferences, needs, and concerns.

It will also serve to reassure travellers on the safety of travel to Kenya by addressing their health concerns, raise awareness of the destination, including added safety measures and local government regulations and contribute to revive local economies supported by tourism.

“Whilst we cannot predict when this pandemic will end, nor when our industry will fully recover… we do know that great things happen when people come together!” Balala said during the unveiling of the KNCB logo in Nairobi.

He said his ministry through KNCB will continue to play a crucial role in industry level ecosystem collaboration, approaching the future in a clustered way that provides the platform to rethink networks, create new networks, and repackage the destination offering collectively.

“My ministry is committed to unlocking the value of the MICE sector in Kenya’s rebound. We foresee drastic changes in the meetings industry and KNCB will be on the forefront to provide leadership in expanding the economic benefits and impact of MICE post Covid-19,” Balala said.

MICE remains a key segment of the country’s tourism sector where it is estimated every international delegate spends at least Sh376,000 per conference trip of about three to six days.

KNCB has in place a road map for the growth of MICE business in the country, according to Nzioka, with the bureau targeting to position Kenya among the top 50 global MICE destinations and top three in Africa.

“Our vision is to position Kenya as Africa’s leading and authentic MICE destination by 2030,” Nzioka said.

As of 2019, Kenya was ranked 73 globally by the International Congress and Convention Association.

Expansion of MICE will be a boost to the tourism sector, noting that business travellers that participate in leisure activities are growing, with 49 per cent extending their trips to include leisure experiences.

Source: The Star

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