The National Institute for Hospitality and Tourism (NIHOTOUR ) has partnered with CMD Tourism and Trade Enterprises to position Nigeria as a leading gastronomy tourism destination in Africa. The Director- General, NIHOTOUR, Alhaji Nura Kangiwa, said this at the 5th edition of the annual CMD Food Tour titled “Around the World in a Day” in Abuja.
Kangiwa, who was represented by Mr Taiwo Famogbiyele, the Director, Special Duties of the Institute, said the Institute had decided to jointly host the event with CMD tourism, in order to showcase Nigeria as a tourism destination.
He said such partnership would also create new opportunities, enhance our market presence and expand our reach within the industry.
“Our partnership with CMD Tourism, as well as other stakeholders in the tourism sector, is aimed at improving the tourism sector.
” It is also aimed at the improvement of sector-specific knowledge and Nigeria’s capacity of hosting signature food festivals that depicts our traditions, cultures, and diversity of our hospitality offerings.
“We see the partnership with CMD Tourism and Trade Enterprises Ltd as a consolidation of NIHOTOUR’s efforts in positioning Nigeria as a leading gastronomy tourism destination in Africa.
“The CMD Food Tour participating in today will be showcasing the different country’s tourist attractions, the culture Food, dance, traditional wear, movies, and Griots,” NIHOTOUR chief said.
According to him, good food and business will no doubt go together, so beyond food, this tourism event is also an opening for business opportunities as well.
”While participants are busy savouring the delicacies of the participating countries, they can use the opportunity to talk about diverse business.
” They can still talk about investment opportunities available in one another’s country, get to network with the diplomatic community and create new business relationships.
“I am made to understand that over 15 countries are participating, as well as embassies, high commissions, tourism boards.
” These countries that will showcase their food, culture and countries’ tourist attractions today have a chance of going home with mouthwatering prizes,” he said.
NIHOTOUR boss commended CMD Tourism and Trade Enterprises Ltd. for coming up with such a remarkable programme.
“I sincerely hope that at the end of the programme, the Tourism opportunities will have been unlocked and business relationships would have been deepened.”
Mrs Cecile Mambo, Managing Director of CMD tourism and Trade Enterprises Ltd. said CMD food tour described as apt as 15 countries were represented to showcase their indigenous delicacies.
According to her, these include Ghana, South Africa, Senegal, Cameroon, Coto D’Ivoire , Uganda, Botswana, Tunisia among others.
“The love our partners and tourism stakeholders show despite the downpour reveals that they stand for sustainability in the sector, which the food tour is trying to prove.
“We want change in the cultural heritage as well as responsible tourism sector.
“The reason why 15 countries participated was to give Nigerians an over view of other people culture, as well as exploiting and interacting with other people.”
The managing director said that event was designed especially for various culture to promote cultural exchange, experience a deeper sense of acceptance and inclusion to make the tourism product offerings better while preserving the heritage and authenticity of destinations.
According to him, it is a platform for networking with embassies. We are awarding the best stand, best culture house among others.
Also speaking, the Ambassador of Cote D’ivoire to Nigeria, Mr Kalilou Traore, commended CMD tourism for organising a programme aimed at promoting Africa gastronomy, particularly for Ivorianne gastronomy in Nigeria.
He said that participating in this programme made him to be excited, not for the food but for the love for each other, as well as for the growth of tourism.
“We are here to exchange discovering and feasibility in the tourism sector and also promote Africa Cup of Nation coming up in January. We want Nigerians to participate fully by coming to our country,” he said.