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Mali: 51 hotels close shop following drop in tourism investments

Fifty-one hotels have been closed down, leading to a loss of 347 jobs following the decline in tourism investments across the country, according to the Malian Office of Hotels and Tourism (OMATHO).

OMATHO said the development accounted for the drop in investment figures from 12 billion FCFA in 2011 to less than 6 billion FCFA in 2012.

According to OMATHO, the number of visitors at the border entry post of Sikasso, the main access gate to Mali from the south, was 32,542 in 2012, less than the 2011 figure.

It said that the figure comprised 54% locals, 45% Africans and 1% from the rest of the world, adding that 47% of the visitors stayed with host families and 28% in hotels.

The decline slowed down patronages in the northern regions where hotels were seized by Islamic jihadists during the crisis in Mali.

However, tourism still booms in Bamako where accommodation figure stands at 62%.

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