NAIROBI (Xinhua) --
Kenya has set aside 1 million U.S. dollars in the current
financial year to green the hospitality sector, the tourism
investment promotion agency said on Tuesday.
Managing Director of Tourism Finance Corporation (TFC), told
journalists in Nairobi that the energy efficiency facility will
be used to finance solar energy, water treatment and recycling
plants for the tourism sector.
“Our aim is to
ensure that the tourism sector is sustainable so that it doesn’t
contribute to the destruction of the natural habitat or
environmental degradation,” Orumoi said during the launch of the
2018 Kenya Hospital Report by Jumia Travel.
In order to
encourage the hospitality sector to embrace green technology, he
said TFC will extend the credit facility at concessional rates.
Orumoi said that the
loans will be advanced to tourism facilities to enable them to
reduce the amount of energy required to provide products and
He added that they
are targeting to green 20 hotels by the end of the year. The
official noted that the tourism sector has been slow to embrace
green technologies due to the perception that it is a capital
In 2017, the Energy
Regulatory Commission made it a requirement for all commercial
buildings to install solar water heating systems in order to
promote environmental conservation.
Orumoi said that the
use of green hotels is one of the strategies that Kenya is using
to increase number of international visitors as there are a
growing number of tourists who seek out eco-friendly hotels in
order to reduce their carbon foot print.
Norah Ratemo, Head
of Credit at the TFC said the organization has allocated 3.8
million dollars to extend financial assistance to the hotel
sector in 2018, up from 3.75 million dollars in 2017 in order to
promote development and expansion of new hotels in the country.
“For hotelier to
qualify for the funding they must meet equity participation of
at least 30 percent of the project out of which 10 percent must
be in liquid cash,” he said.
According to TFC,
the level of capital investment in tourism and travel sector
from the private sector hit approximately 90 million U.S.
dollars in 2017.
The tourist body has
been tasked by the national development blue print, Vision 2030
to develop 65,000 beds by 2030.
Ratemo said that
they are also keen to partner with Chinese investors in order to
expand tourism sector, noting that Kenya can borrow expertise
from Chinese in the construction of modern hotels in order to
attract more visitors.
She said that
Chinese themed hotels could help to lure more Asian travelers as
the country focuses to diversifying tourism source markets and
move away from dependence on the western nations.
According to the
ministry of tourism, the sector’s earnings increased from 997
million dollars in 2016 to 1.2 billion dollars in 2017.
The number of
international visitor arrivals also increased by 8.1 percent to
1.4 million tourists in 2017.