By Loubna Flah
By Loubna Flah
Morocco World News
Casablanca, June 24, 2012
The Ministry of tourism announced its intention to launch the new edition of « Konouz Bladi » program this summer in order to promote domestic tourism. Domestic tourism is often considered as an alternative to international tourism especially in periods of low tourist arrivals due to the economic crisis in Europe. Last year’s edition of Kounouz Bladi was wooed by most professionals in the tourism business.
The Moroccan daily Al Massae reports that tourism professionals were not enthusiastic to take part in last’s year edition. Mr. Mohammed Adda, the head of the Moroccan National Office for Tourism stated that “hotels owners seemed totally disinterested in the program. The number of hotels that submitted offers did not exceed 50 out of 1500 across the country”. He went on to say that “the Moroccan National Office for Tourism cannot force the players in the tourism industry to adhere to the program. Our role remains solely advisory”.
The tourism professionals ascribe their unwillingness to champion the project to high taxation on tourism products, as well as the rise in expenses related to hotels management. On the other hand, “Kounouz Bladi” targets customers among the middle class who do not often allot a budget for trips and accommodation. Therefore, the prices offered in these promotional packages remain out of their reach.
Nevertheless, the Ministry of Tourism announced appealing prices in addition to the involvement of travel agencies who are entrusted with providing attractive packages similar to those offered to international tourists in the 2012 edition of “Kounouz Bladi” program.
The ministry of tourism announced that the 2012 edition will be extended to other seasons, which will enable domestic tourists to benefit from interesting discounts throughout the year. Tourism professionals expect the Ministry of Tourism to develop a sustainable strategy to support domestic tourism during. It is worth mentioning that the domestic market represents 26% of the tourism revenues in Morocco. In addition, Moroccans have spent around 23 billion dirhams in 2011 in domestic trips.