ZIMBABWE Tourism Authority (ZTA) — in partnership with China Zimbabwe Youth Forum — on Monday night hosted the Miss Universe China (Beijing and Hainan) grand finale at a Harare hotel, as a way of promoting cultural exchange and business linkages between the two countries.
BY WINSTONE ANTONIO
Binglin Tao from Beijing was crowned the queen while Xinru Han and Wanzhong Wang were adjudged first and second princess respectively at the pageant that was funded by the Chinese Federation of Zimbabwe and Miss Universe (Beijing and Hainan), among other sponsors.
China-Zimbabwe Youth Forum president, Brian Mudumi, told NewsDay that hosting the pageant in the country was a milestone in promoting the country’s tourism industry.
“As there is low tourist traffic from China, the Zimbabwe China Youth Forum managed to convince the authorities of both countries to shift the venue of Miss Universe China final pageant from Beijing to Harare with the purpose of marketing our tourism industry,” he said.
Mudumi said China was one of the biggest potential markets for Zimbabwe’s tourism and hospitality industry.
Mudumi said the Chinese delegation that included models and technical staff have already visited some of local tourist destinations such as Victoria Falls and Hwange National Park and are still scheduled to tour the Matopos, the Antelope Park, Chinhoyi Caves, Mana Pools, Mutarazi Falls and Inyangani Mountains.
ZTA chief executive Karikoga Kaseke said it was an honour to host the pageant.
“On the back of the Look-East policy, Zimbabwe was given by the Chinese government what they call approved destination status, but we, from tourism, know that we are not doing very well in the Chinese market. Our desire is to do extremely well in terms of our arrivals from China,” he said.
“We are honoured to host Miss Universe (Beijing and Hainan) China that is being beamed live which is a good strategy for us as we are getting exposure in the Chinese market is the biggest in the world.”