TOURISM DEVELOPMENT FRAMEWORK – Xai-Xai IDP
A more ideal approach is to release sites at a much slower tempo than the demand might seem to require. In this manner, the value of concessions are increased and people will have more incentive to first restore unsightly dilapidated properties in the old areas of Xai-Xai Beach before developing new residential areas. Furthermore, by growing more organically, i.e. concentrically from a centre/s as and when the need arises, would enable the financing of infrastructure development from funds generated by a more substantial tax base as is currently the case.
In this light it is recommended that no further concessions be awarded outside of the boundaries of the old Xai-Xai town, unless the necessary infrastructure has been put in place to effectively service such concessions with bulk services such as water, electricity and roads. As an alternative, bigger concessions may be awarded to concession holders on the premise that they finance the bulk services as stipulated by the IDP. In both alternatives the obligations and rights of the concessionaires relevant to their share in developing the infrastructure and services must be clearly defined prior to issuing the concessions (i.e., contribution in funding or construction). This measure will effectively put a halt to the current haphazard way of managing concessions and will allow authorities and investors the time to address the critical issue of infrastructure and services, thus creating a more favourable climate for future investment.
Investment Facilitation Centre
A large number of concession holders do not have adequate finances at their disposal to develop properties on their allotted sites and have invested in concessions purely with a view to speculate as soon as investment conditions in the area become more favourable. These concession holders are mostly individuals who know how to brave the prohibitive administration process involved in formally securing title to a concession. They will later be rewarded for their efforts through the sale of a part of, or their entire concession to a third party/ies with the financial capability to finance development. This situation further exacerbates the already slow pace of development in Xai-Xai Beach and environs.
Property, or concession, speculation as such is not necessarily negative but in the way it is practised in Xai-Xai Beach development is postponed by speculators who don’t add value to property.
This adverse state of affairs can however be addressed by appointing a capable investment- facilitating agency responsible for assessing investors and representing them in the concession application procedure. Such an agency should ideally have the capacity to properly assess the financial integrity of prospective investors and in addition should fully comprehend the administrative procedures required from investors by each relevant governmental department. The costs involved in the services of the investment agency may be recouped from investors through a levy added to current concession fees.
It is recommended that one reputable accounting firm active in Mozambique be approached for this purpose. They would have the necessary integrity to manage such a function, would have access to an extended network and would command the skills required to properly appraise investors based on their financial histories. Such an agency might furthermore fulfil a transitory role of ensuring current concession holders meet their obligations in terms of the development of their sites.
With the exception of a few island destinations, all tourism activities came to virtual standstill during the 16 years of civil strive in Mozambique. In the Gaza Province tourism related activities resumed in 1993, a year after the signing of the Peace Accord. Tourism to Gaza and, therefore, also Xai-Xai Beach is in process of reconstruction – not only of physical infrastructure but also of human resources and most importantly of its tourism image.
In order to place Xai-Xai Beach back in its rightful place on the tourism itinerary of the region and of the world, an integrated marketing strategy needs to be planned and implemented. The reconstruction of the desired tourism image through a concerted marketing effort should,