03 May 2014 08:50am
LÜDERITZ, 03 MAY (NAMPA) President Hifikepunye Pohamba says the Crayfish Festival has become an important catalyst for promoting trade and investment opportunities across different sectors.
Pohamba said this in a speech read on his behalf by Home Affairs and Immigration Minister Pendukeni Iivula-Ithana during the opening of the 7th Crayfish Festival here on Friday.
The festival is celebrated under the theme Celebrating crayfish in diversity.
It started on Wednesday and ends on Monday.
Pohamba said since the Crayfish Festivals inception in 2008, it has become an important attraction for thousands of visitors, businesspersons and investors to this town.
He noted that the festival has been instrumental in positioning this harbour town as a major tourist and investment destination, adding that this event will further contribute to unleashing the economic potential of the town, particularly through the tourism industry.
The Namibian leader said the tourism industry has become an important growth point for many economies around the world, and it also contributes significantly to employment creation and poverty alleviation.
Here in our country, tourism is a vital pillar of our economy and has been identified as one of the priority sectors of our fourth National Development Plan (NDP4), he said.
The president noted that the sector contributes more than 14.5 per cent to Namibia's gross domestic product (GDP) and represents about 18.2 per cent of all employment in the country.
He encouraged the residents of Lüderitz town to harness the opportunities offered by the festival, and thereby contribute to the growth of the Namibian economy.
The rich history of this part of our country is visible almost everywhere. This includes historic sites such as Shark Island and Dias Point. The local museum, on the other hand, portrays the extensive history of the town and surrounding areas, Pohamba said.
He then called for the good utilisation of these sites to promote tourism and economic growth for the benefit of the residents of this town.