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Côte d'Ivoire: Travel and Tourism in Côte d'Ivoire


Travel and Tourism in Côte d'Ivoire

End of the conflict brings economic recovery

Next a civil war spanning 2010-2011 that halted the economy, Côte d’Ivoire is once again back in business with a large stream of FDI targeted at a wide variety of markets. The government is pushing Côte d’Ivoire, and particularly its economic capital Abidjan, to become a hub for the wider French-speaking region. As additional airlines and international hotels enter the country, a wider range of business infrastructure will become available and boost Abidjan’s attractiveness as tourist destination.

Infrastructure improvements boosted travel and tourism

In 2012-2013 new highways were introduced to satisfy the demands of commerce and industrial needs, but as well to boost domestic, inbound and outbound tourism. Abidjan is presently connected to Yamoussoukro and further, to Signrobo, in the north of the country. Connections to neighbouring nations are as well priority projects for the government. Railways are to be improved within the country.

Growing oil extraction industry to provide affordable prices for transportation and to drive sea transportation

Thanks to foreign investments into the development of the petroleum industry, the government launched in 2013 a modernisation project for the key port areas. As a result, this maintains the inflation and prices on fuel for transportation and contributes to increase of sea transportation. Part the key partners of the government are the international players, like Total, Pétroci, and Panatlantic, but as well Lukoil, Initial Fuel and Taleveras.

Air Côte d’Ivoire shows impressive increase next two years on the market

The national company was able to join the key players on the market and showed very promising results in two years of operations. It provided flights to 17 destinations by the end of 2013. Air transportation remains the key contributor to the development of travel and tourism in the country.

Travel accommodation adjusted in accordance with general tourism strategy

Business tourism is the major type of inbound tourism in Abidjan city, the economic capital of the country. But the government tries to attract additional leisure tourists and develops five-star hotels for dynamic high-class leisure tourists along with expansion of travel accommodation to remote areas and develop ecotourism. A project to construct 30 bungalows called “relais Paillotes” located nearby natural parks and making use of ecologically pure sources of energy, is one example.


Improved political climate aids tourism recovery

The five-year civil war ended in 2007 following an agreement between the government and the rebel forces. Both business and leisure arrivals increased in 2009. Outbound tourism as well grew. However, the figures were still below the highs completed in 2002 and 2003.

Presidential elections will determine the fate of the tourism industry

The presidential elections, which have been postponed numerous times, are expected to take place in March 2010. If these elections are again postponed, the country could regress into a national of violence and civil war. This would adversely impact tourism. If the elections are held, a positive political climate will boost tourism.

Recession has limited impact

The world recession has had little impact on tourism since the figures were by presently low due to the civil war. Other destinations had entered recession while in the midst of a tourism boom. In contrast, the tourist industry in Côte d’Ivoire had by presently been heavily affected by the civil war. In addition, the Middle East and African economy grew while the world economy contracted.

Abidjan airport striving to achieve direct flights to and from North America

North American tourists have to use connecting flights from Europe if they wish to travel to the country. This is a deterrent as it increases travel time. Currently, Abidjan airport lacks TSA clearance, which is a pre-requisite to handle direct flights to and from North America. The government has awarded a 25-year arrangement to a Canadian company for passenger safety and security screening. The airport expects to gain TSA clearance in due course.

Outbound tourism could profit from the football World Cup in South Africa

Côte d’Ivoire has qualified for the 2010 football World Cup and has a world-renowned player in Didier Drogba. The country’s citizens will be keen to support their team during the competition. Travel operators could seize this opportunity to develop South Africa as a popular tourist destination. Innovative packages can be expected to comprise air tickets, match tickets, hotel reservations and sightseeing tours. Cruise packages are as well a distinct possibility as both nations have a coastline.