The Ethiopian booth at the 2016 China (Guangdong) International Tourism Industry Expo. [Photo: Newsgd.com/Xiaowen]
An interview with CG of Ethiopia in Guangzhou
The 2016 China (Guangdong) International Tourism Industry Expo (CITIE) debuts an “East African Tourism Promotion Area”. This is the first time East African tourism got a promotion area in CITIE.
Newsgd.com interviewed Mr. Melaku Legesse, the Consul General of Ethiopia in Guangzhou to talk about the tourism cooperation between Guangdong and Ethiopia. Mr. Melaku Legesse hopes CITIE can offer an opportunity to enhance resources exchange with Ethiopian tourism, to show wild enthusiasm of Ethiopian tourism, and to develop the Chinese tourism market.
Newsgd: The Ethiopian booth has been set up in CITIE since 2014. It’s the third time for your country to participate in the Expo. So what special things does your country bring to the Expo this year?
Mr. Legesse: We have tourist attractions. Parks, forests, sea, wild animals, and also landscapes are very common for most African countries. By addition, we also have historical attractions. Our country has a history of more than 3,000 years. And in the northern part of the country, you can find very old monuments and old religious sites. You can find many colorful churches and also the wildlife. There are so many wild animals. If you go to the east, you can find the hottest place on earth, lower than the sea level. When you go to the south, you can see different cultures and nationalities. There are more than 80 different ethnic groups. So more than 80 different languages are spoken in Ethiopia. You can find over 80 different kinds of cultures, as well different living, different clothes. We do have 11 UNESCO registered tourist spots.
By the way, coffee is also our attraction. Coffee firstly is discovered in Ethiopia. We have the best quality coffee arabica. Most of our coffee is natural. Almost 70% coffee production is grown in forests. It’s naturally organic. Coffee is also a major attraction at the Expo.
We used to say that “Ethiopia has 13-month sunshine”. We can see the clear sunshine around the year. In our calendar, we do have 13 months, so we have to say that we have 13-month sunshine. But we have changed this motto. Now the tourism motto is“the land of origins”.
I’d like to mention that China is our No.1 target for tourism promotion. We expect lots of tourism to come to China. People come for different reasons, such as business, investment or tourism, so that we do a lot of tourism promotion activities, which concentrate on Guangdong and other regions, like Shanghai and Beijing. We participated in such activities in big tourism trade fairs. Basically, our consulate also works on match making the tour operators.