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Britain seeks to review travel advisories on Kenya

12 November 2014, 11:38

Nairobi - Britain said Tuesday there is need to review the travel advisories imposed on Kenya by some European countries and other key source markets.

British High Commissioner to Kenya Christian Turner acknowledged that the advisories are negatively affecting the tourism industry and the economy in general.

"We would like the advisories changed. There is need to review them with a view to having them lifted altogether," Turner said in Nairobi during talks with Deputy President William Ruto.

Kenya has decried that the advisories are affecting the country's tourism, which has been recovering after devastating terror attacks in 1998 and last year's Westgate attacks.

Britain is Kenya's top source market for tourists, but terrorism perpetuated by the Al-Shabaab has kept British citizens away from the East African nation.

Also read: UK issues Kenya travel advice update

Analysts had also warned that the warnings are a blow to Kenya's already troubled tourist industry which relies on foreign visitor, many of whom combine safaris with beach holidays in Mombasa.

A statement issued after the meeting said Ruto appreciated the change of stance by the British government, noting that the circumstances that might have necessitated the advisories have changed.

Ruto said tourists to Kenya are guaranteed safety and security. "We are working within our budget to ensure that we have recruited and trained more security officers and equipped them well to deal with any incidents of lawlessness," he said.

He invited high commissioners and ambassadors from the EU and America as well as tourists from other source markets to visit the coast to attest the improved security in the area.

Ruto also decried reports by a foreign TV station that Ebola had spread to Kenya, saying the misinformation worsened the quickly recovering tourism situation.

"It is not correct to say Kenya has Ebola. We have never had Ebola in this country and reports that the country has Ebola are misleading," he affirmed.

Meanwhile, Ruto said the government is committed to easing the cost of doing business in Kenya through three bills currently at Parliament.

"I have been assured by the National Assembly that they will pass the Company Law, Insolvency and Registration of Business Bills before parliament goes for the December recess to make this possible," he said.

 - Xinhua

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