1. bookVolume 11 (2021): Issue 2 (December 2021)
Journal Details
License
Format
Journal
eISSN
2182-4924
First Published
30 Apr 2016
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3 times per year
Languages
English
Open Access

Ethiopian Tourism, Legislation Gaps, and Implementation Challenges: A Study in Amhara Region

Published Online: 29 Jun 2022
Volume & Issue: Volume 11 (2021) - Issue 2 (December 2021)
Page range: 219 - 229
Received: 08 Oct 2020
Accepted: 10 Dec 2021
Journal Details
License
Format
Journal
eISSN
2182-4924
First Published
30 Apr 2016
Publication timeframe
3 times per year
Languages
English
Background of the Study

Tourism is now one of the largest and most important industries in the world in terms of employment creation and the generation of foreign revenue (UNDP, 2011). According to UNWTO (2019), international tourist arrivals reached 1.4 billion worldwide in 2018, up from 1326 million in 2017. Likewise, international tourism receipts earned by destinations worldwide have grown to US$ 1.7 trillion up from US$ 1340 billion in 2017. Besides, this industry today represents 7% of global export, and 29% of the world's export services (UNWTO, 2019). Even though their share is small compared to developed destinations of the world, developing countries have a promising piece of this enormous hospitality and tourism revenue, which is vital for them as a source of foreign exchange. For instance, in Ethiopia tourism is becoming one of the important sectors, contributing significantly to the social, cultural, and economic development aspects of the country (MoCT, 2011). Ethiopia's Travel & Tourism economy grew tremendously by 48.6% in 2018, compared with the global growth rate of 3.9% and the African growth rate of 9.4%, the largest of any country in the world. In 2018, Travel & Tourism contributed US$ 7.4 billion to the country's economy. The sector now represents 9.4% of Ethiopia's total economy. The industry in Ethiopia supported 2.2 million jobs or 8.3% of total employment (WTTC, 2019).

Tourism is a multispectrum and interagency puzzle due to the impact many sectors have on this industry. The need for policy coherence and long-term strategic approaches is safeguarded not only by strategies that can easily change every governmental mandate but also through legislation and legal frameworks. As a result, laws are especially important to promote effective governance and policy approaches that help overcome sectorial gaps (Democracy for Development Institute, 2017). In tourism, government involvement is essential. The government's role in African countries is to ensure that they use tourism as an economic tool for transforming the economy and for development (Ismet & Abuhjeeleh, 2016).

According to Gjerden (2008), in any industry/practice, there are gaps in policy and related legislation, regulation and governance. Regulatory gaps are substantive and/or geographical gaps in the legal framework, that is, issues that are currently unregulated or insufficiently regulated at a global, regional or sub-regional level. Governance gaps are gaps in the institutional framework, including the absence of institutions or mechanisms at a global, regional or sub-regional level and inconsistent mandates of existing organizations and mechanisms.

Deficiencies in the practical implementation of tourism policies and regulations mean that the impacts of tourism are more likely to be disruptive and negative for the communities and environments of tourist destinations. Poor implementation can lead to long-term adverse consequences for the society and economy of the destination, including a decline in the area's attraction for tourists. An improved understanding of the causes of gaps between policies and regulations and their successful application may help tourism policymakers and managers to reduce these gaps and to regulate and control the development of the tourism industry and its impacts more effectively (Krutwaysho, 2003).

The study aims at investigating barriers to the implementation of tourism policies and tourism-related regulations in Ethiopia. It also strives to assess the gaps between tourism regulations and their successful implementation, as these are a key issue for tourist destination development.

Statement of the Problem

A report by the World Travel and Tourism Council (WTTC) indicated that in the last few decades the tourism industry in Ethiopia has shown growth (WTTC, 2019). The Government of Ethiopia (GOE) prioritized tourism development in its Growth and Transformation Plan (GTP) and tourism policy to optimize the existing tourism resources as a driving force of economic growth for the whole country. In light of all these, the government planned to make Ethiopia one of the top five tourist destinations in Africa by the year 2020, with an emphasis on maximizing the poverty-reducing impacts of tourism and changing the international image and positioning of the country (SNV, 2007; Tourism Development Policy, 2009; Muna, 2014).

Tourism and hotels are specific economic activities, dynamic and heterogeneous, which provide important income for businesses and the national budget. This is based on the fact that tourism is adaptable to any social activity and such activities can transform into a tourism business. To have optimum activities, certain countries must approve legislation that should be a guarantee of development based on the market economy (Krasniqi, 2010).

In many developing countries, there is highly centralised control. Policies and regulations may be less strictly enforced in remote areas, resulting from their long distance from centres of policymaking. There is a gap in implementing policies and regulations, especially in developing countries where there is poverty, bureaucracy and corruption (Krutwaysho, 2003). Other barriers include inadequate expertise and lack of experienced and skilled people in tourism matters. Local governments often fail to invest in tourism education; as a result, they end up having few policymakers to educate people on the importance of tourism (Ismet & Abuhjeeleh, 2016).

Ethiopia has one of the richest collections of sites, monuments, wildlife and art objects in the whole of Africa, which underlines the importance of comprehensive and effective legislation for the protection of this heritage. To this effect, Ethiopian Tourism Policy of 2009; Antiquities Proclamation of 1966; Study and Protection of Antiquities proclamation of 1989 and Proclamation on Research; Conservation of Cultural Heritage of No. 209/2000, Wildlife Development, Conservation and Utilization Council of Ministers Regulations No. 163/2008; Convention on the Means of Prohibiting and Preventing the Illicit Import, Export and Transfer of Ownership of Cultural Property Ratification Proclamation No. 374/2003’ etc… were approved at different times.

According to Hudson, Hunter, & Peckham, (2019) there are four broad contributors to policy failure: overly optimistic expectations; implementation in dispersed governance; inadequate collaborative policymaking; and the vagaries of the political cycle. In the Ethiopian case many of the proclamations failed to bring the intended protection and conservation, they lack directives and regulations for their implementation, some of the provisions are outdated and not inclusive enough to meet the present demand of cultural heritage protection, the attention given to the cultural sector is very low: there is insufficient public awareness of heritage and the proclamations relevant to it.

Policy implementation studies are significant for the developing world, especially for tourism, which is employed as a national and regional tool for economic development. However, there are very few publications on tourism policy implementation concerning the developing world (Krutwaysho, 2003). In terms of tourism legislation in Ethiopia, previous studies mainly concentrate on single proclamations and lack a holistic approach. This study sees the major legislative drawbacks (implementation gaps and challenges). It also assesses the knowledge and awareness level of tourism stakeholders, who are responsible for its implementation.

Objectives of the Study
General objective

The guiding objective of this study is to assess the Ethiopian tourism legislation gaps, and implementation challenges.

Specific objectives

To assess the awareness level of Amhara Region tourism professionals about the gap on existing Ethiopian tourism legislation.

To point out bottlenecks that hinder the proper implementation of Ethiopian tourism legislation in the Amhara Region.

Methodology
Study Area

This study was bound to the Amhara regional state major tourist destinations. It encompasses Bahira Dar city administration, Gondar City Administration, and Lasta Woreda and Lalibela Town administration.

Research Design and Approach

In this study, a mixed research approach, a combination of both quantitative and qualitative research approaches, was used. The design of the study is descriptive. According to Kothari (2004, p. 37), descriptive study design is ‘concerned with … a narration of facts and characteristics concerning an individual, group or situation’. Most of the social research comes under this category.

A cross-sectional research approach (one-time shot) was used in gathering the data for the research in the major tourist destinations in the region, such as Gondar, Lalibela, and Bahir Dar.

Population, Sampling Technique and Size

A sample design is a definite plan for obtaining a sample from a given population. It also refers to a technique or the procedure the researcher would adopt in selecting items for the sample (Kothari, 2004). As a result, in this research a nonprobability sampling design was used for informant selection. In nonprobability sampling, determining the study subjects and specific cases is an ongoing process of fieldwork (Creswell, 2009). From nonprobability sampling design, purposive sampling design was used to decide and select the informants of the research. In nonprobability sampling, units are deliberately selected to reflect particular features of the groups within the sampled population.

To assess tourism legislation gaps, implementation and challenges, tourism professionals were used. Following the data obtained from the regional tourism bureau, Zonal, Woreda and the city tourism office of the main tourist destination sites in the Amhara region, there are a total of 153 employees. All the 153 employees participated in this study.

Data Sources

For this study and to achieve the objective, a cross-sectional approach (one-time shot) was used to collect data from a primary source. The primary data was collected from a questionnaire survey.

Data Collection Instrument

To properly address each objective, a questionnaire was developed from previous studies. Five Likert-type questionnaires were used to collect data from tourism bureau staff and office worker experts at the regional level and at each destination. A published pool of items was adapted to improve the quality. For challenge-related questions the items were adopted from Dodds and Butler (2009) study.

Validity and Reliability

Before the data collection, the necessary reliability and validity test was conducted based on the pilot survey. The result of the pilot survey was conducted on 40 respondents in Gondar and Bahirdar cities. As Table 1 indicates, the Cronbach's alpha result shows high internal consistency among all the eight variables, with scores of 0.743 to 0.924, which is above the recommended level of 0.70. Similarly, the Inter-Item Correlation Matrix indicates a positive item-item correlation along with all the variables (Ferketich, 1991).

Reliability Statistics

Reliability StatisticsItems Cronbach's Alpha Number of Items
Tourism legislation suitability .914 13
Tourism legislation acceptability .813 12
Tourism legislation feasibility .746 5
Stakeholder Support .922 5
Economic .924 4
Coordination/Bureaucracy .760 3
Awareness .849 2
Ambiguity .842 4

Source: Pilot survey, 2019

Tourism Legislation Suitability

The Inter-Item Correlation Matrix indicates a positive item-item correlation for tourism legislation suitability. The Corrected item-total Correlation is 0.447 to 0.794, which indicates a high correlation between the items.

Tourism Legislation Acceptability

The Inter-Item Correlation Matrix indicates a positive item-item correlation. The Corrected item-total Correlation is 0.283 to 0.794, which indicates a high correlation between the items.

Tourism Legislation Feasibility

The Inter-Item Correlation Matrix indicates a positive item-item correlation. The Corrected item-total Correlation is 0.401 to 0.645 which indicates a high correlation between the items.

Stakeholder Support

The Inter-Item Correlation Matrix indicates a positive item-item correlation. The Corrected item-total Correlation is 0.695 to 0.851, which indicates a high correlation between the items.

Economic

The Inter-Item Correlation Matrix indicates a positive item-item correlation. The Corrected item-total Correlation is 0.742 to 0.873, which indicates a high correlation between the items.

Coordination/Bureaucracy

The Inter-Item Correlation Matrix indicates a positive item-item correlation. The Corrected item-total Correlation is 0.527 to 0.656, which indicates a high correlation between the items.

Awareness

The Inter-Item Correlation Matrix indicates a positive item-item correlation. The Corrected item-total Correlation is 0.739 for the two items included, which indicate a high correlation between the items.

Ambiguity

The Inter-Item Correlation Matrix indicates a positive item-item correlation. The Corrected item-total Correlation is 0.656 to 0.692, which indicates a high correlation between the items.

Data Analysis Procedure

The quantitative data was analysed by using descriptive statistics. Statistical package for social science (SPSS) version 21 software packages was used for computations. The advantage of using SPSS version 21 software for the analysis of quantitative data is to display the results of the research work in a simplified way. Using this software package, mean and standard deviation results were produced. The study was forced to limit its analysis to descriptive statistics because its objective was to assess the tourism legislation gaps and the challenges faced in their implementation, rather than drawing inferences based on different criteria.

Results and discussion

Among the 153 questionnaires distributed to tourism professionals, 147 were valid and properly returned. The remaining 6 questionnaires were invalid and rejected because of too many missing items. The following analysis is based on the 147 valid questionnaires.

Background information

Regarding Table 2, out of the 147 respondents 93 (63.3%) were male and 54 (36.7%) were female. Concerning the age group, the respondents were distributed among 20 to 59 years of age. 47 (32.0 %) were 30–39 years of age; 43 (29.3%) were 20–29 years of age; 36 (24.5 %) were 40–49 years of age; 21 (14.3 %) were 50–59 years of age. The majority, or 102 (69.4 %) of the respondents were married; 41 (27.9 %) were single and only 4 (2.7 %) were divorced. Considering the educational qualification of the respondents, the majority or 94 (63.9 %) have a first degree; 51 (34.7 %) have a postgraduate degree and the remaining 2 (1.4 %) have completed technical and vocational education. Concerning the work experience of the respondents, less than 10 years, and 10 – 20 years of experience, were the majority with 58 (39.5%) of respondents each. On the other hand, 17 (11.6 %) have 21–30 years of experience and the remaining 14 (9.5 %) have more than 30 years’ experience.

Respondents Background Information

Variables Categories of respondents Frequency Per cent
Sex Male 93 63.3
Female 54 36.7
Total 147 100.0

Age 20–29 years 43 29.3
30–39 years 47 32.0
40–49 years 36 24.5
50–59 years 21 14.3
Total 147 100.0

Marital status Single 41 27.9
Married 102 69.4
Divorced 4 2.7
Total 147 100.0

Educational level? Technical and Vocational 2 1.4
First Degree 94 63.9
Postgraduate 51 34.7
Total 147 100.0

Experience Less than 10 years 58 39.5
10–20 years 58 39.5
21–30 years 17 11.6
More than 30 years 14 9.5
Total 147 100.0

Source: Researcher's own survey, 2019

Ethiopian tourism legislation gaps
Tourism legislation suitability

The requirements of the legislation's suitability are related to the ability to plan, which can specifically affect the composition and usage of resources by a series of measures under the conditions of macro- and microenvironments.

As Table 3 indicates, the cumulative mean score for tourism legislation suitability is 2.956, which is below the average score of 3. The overall score specifies that the stakeholders involved in this study think that the legislation is not suitable for different circumstances of the country. Only four items were rated above the average score and their score is still unsatisfactory with a range of 3.03 to 3.12.

Tourism Legislation Suitability

No Tourism Legislations Suitability Mean Std. Deviation
1 Ethiopian tourism legislation has clearly defined its purpose and method of elaborating 2.93 1.067
2 Ethiopian tourism legislation defines the most relevant target groups 3.03 .975
3 Ethiopian tourism legislation builds on other plans and strategies 2.95 1.005
4 Ethiopian tourism legislation takes into account the impact of selected global factors 2.91 1.122
5 Ethiopian tourism legislation takes into account the impact of selected local factors 3.07 1.141
6 Ethiopian tourism legislation analyses the situation in other destinations 2.82 1.066
7 Ethiopian tourism legislation deals with the internal sources of destination 3.12 1.004
8 Ethiopian tourism legislation evaluates the resources according to their ability to create a competitive advantage 2.81 1.081
9 Ethiopian tourism legislation clearly and understandable summarises the results of particular analyses 2.82 1.077
10 Ethiopian tourism legislation contains a tourism development vision 3.18 1.266
11 Ethiopian tourism legislation has set clear and specific targets 2.93 1.096
12 Ethiopian tourism legislation proposes targets in accordance with the conclusions of proceeded analyses 2.94 .923
13 Ethiopian tourism legislation proposes measures to achieve the vision 2.92 1.037

Cumulative Mean and Standard Deviation 2.956 1.066

Source: Researcher's survey, 2019

The result from the above table indicates that Ethiopian tourism legislation has shortcomings in terms of clearly defining its purpose and method of elaboration; there is a problem of building on other plans and strategies; they are unable to take into account the impact of selected global factors; there is an inability to analyse the situation in other destinations; there is an inability to evaluate the resources according to their ability to create competitive advantage; there is an inability to clearly and understandably summarise the results of particular analyses; clear and specific targets are absent; there is an inability to propose targets following the conclusions of analyses. Ethiopian tourism legislation lacks proposed measures to achieve the vision.

Tourism legislation acceptability

Acceptability focuses on the satisfaction of the key stakeholders through the development of legislation based on demand for tourism in the destination. Table 4 indicates the stakeholder's evaluation of the tourism legislation in Ethiopia from the perspective of its acceptability.

Tourism Legislations Acceptability

No Tourism Legislations Acceptability Mean Std. Deviation
1 Ethiopian tourism legislation reflects the requirements of elderly and handicapped travelers 2.84 1.000
2 Ethiopian tourism legislation reflects specific needs of young, individual travelers 2.72 1.058
3 Ethiopian tourism legislation reflects specific needs of busy travelers 2.82 1.073
4 Ethiopian tourism legislation motivates tourism operators to improve service quality 2.95 1.036
5 Ethiopian tourism legislation supports cooperation and coordination of tourism operators 2.97 1.249
6 Ethiopian tourism legislation supports environmental-friendly behavior 2.90 1.268
7 Ethiopian tourism legislation supports tourist experience products 2.42 1.199
8 Ethiopian tourism legislation supports products to improve visitors‘ physical condition 2.82 1.102
9 Ethiopian tourism legislation supports products to increase visitors‘ knowledge 2.65 1.139
10 Ethiopian tourism legislation supports on-line information and reservation systems 2.54 1.172
11 Ethiopian tourism legislation supports integrated communication with target groups of visitors 2.67 1.136
12 Ethiopian tourism legislation supports easy movement of visitors among major attractions in the region. 2.25 1.109

Cumulative meanand Std. Deviation 2.71 1.128

Source: Researcher's survey, 2019

With a cumulative mean of 2.714, Table 4 indicates that tourism legislation in Ethiopia has a low level of acceptability. All the twelve items included in this study are rated below the average mean score.

Based on the result, it is possible to conclude that tourism legislation didn’t match the requirements of elderly and handicapped travelers; didn’t reflect specific needs of young and individual travelers; didn’t reflect specific needs of busy travelers; didn’t motivate tourism operators to improve service quality; didn’t support cooperation and coordination of tourism operator; didn’t support environmental-friendly behavior; didn’t support tourist experience products; didn’t support products to improve visitors‘ physical condition; didn’t support products to increase visitors‘ knowledge; didn’t support on-line information and reservation systems; didn’t support integrated communication with target groups of visitors; didn’t support the easy movement of visitors among major attractions in the region.

Tourism legislation feasibility

The feasibility questions are aimed at creating conditions for legislations implementation. The five items included are evaluating the existing necessary resources, the definition of the responsible body, timetable, control system and method of its updating. Feasibility evaluation will indicate if all the necessary resources and other preparations are in place for proper implementation.

Similar to the suitability and acceptability assessments, the feasibility shows a cumulative mean score below the average mean, with a score of 2.85 (see Table 5). This indicates lack of adequate preparation for the implementation of the legislation.

Tourism Legislation Feasibility

No Tourism Legislations Feasibility Mean Std. Deviation
1 Ethiopian tourism legislation identifies the necessary resources for its implementation 2.73 1.050
2 Ethiopian tourism legislation defines the responsibility of particular entities for their implementation 2.84 1.060
3 Ethiopian tourism legislation defines a timetable for their implementation 2.94 .923
4 Ethiopian tourism legislation proposes a control system of implementation of laws 2.92 1.037
5 Ethiopian tourism legislation proposes the method of updating of laws 2.84 1.000

Cumulative Mean and Standard Deviation 2.85 1.014

Source: Researcher's survey, 2019

Ethiopian tourism legislation implementation challenges

In this section, the study tries to assess the potential challenges which are hindering the effective implementation of tourism legislation in Ethiopia. The challenges are categorised into five sections: stakeholder support–related challenges, economic challenges, coordination/bureaucracy–related challenges, awareness–related challenges and ambiguity. The following section tried to discuss the response of tourism professionals concerning the above mentioned five category challenges.

Stakeholder Support

Stakeholder support challenges are bottlenecks related to integration with other sectors and other government levels, participation of other stakeholders, long-term vision and commitment. Table 6 describes the tourism professionals’ feeling about the stakeholders’ support challenges.

Stakeholder Support–Related Challenges

No Stakeholder Support–Related Challenges Mean Std. Deviation
1 There is a lack of integration/coordination with other sectors (Agriculture, trade, transport, etc...) 3.72 1.045
2 There is a lack of integration with other government levels 3.65 1.169
3 There is a lack of participation from other stakeholders 3.68 1.092
4 There is a loss of long-term vision & commitment 3.35 1.134
5 There is a lack of stakeholder involvement 3.48 1.069

Cumulative Mean and Standard Deviation 3.58 1.102

Source: Researcher's survey, 2019

As is depicted in the above table, the respondents indicate that there are various stakeholder support–related challenges for the effective implementation of tourism legislation. The mean score for all five items was above the average mean and the cumulative mean is also 3.58, which is above the average mean. Most of the respondents feel that there is a lack of integration with other sectors and other government levels; there is a lack of participation from other stakeholders; there is a loss of long-term vision and commitment to the implementation of diverse tourism-related legislation.

Economic challenges

The economic challenges are related to focus for the tourism industry as the core of the economy, the concentration of the industry, focus of tourism industry, and budget-related issues.

The result of Table 7 indicates that there are economic challenges for the implementation of tourism legislation. The cumulative mean result is 3.56, which is above the average mean. Generally, the result indicates that there is a lack of holistic focus on tourism as part of the core economy; there is concentration on numbers rather than yield in the tourism sector of the country; there is short-term focus on the tourism legislation rather than a long-term view and there are budget restrictions on enforcement of legislation at different levels.

Economic Challenges

No Economic Challenges Mean Std. Deviation
1 There is a lack of holistic focus on tourism as part of the core economy 3.54 1.136
2 There is concentration on numbers rather than yield 3.66 1.010
3 There is short-term focus on tourism legislation 3.34 1.236
4 There are budget restrictions for enforcement of legislation 3.71 1.159

Cumulative Mean and Standard Deviation 3.56 1.135

Source: Researcher's survey, 2019

Coordination/bureaucracy–related challenges

The existence of coordination and smooth bureaucracy is crucial for the implementation of tourism legislation. On the other hand, when there is the absence of coordination and tough bureaucracy might be a challenge for its implementation. The following table 8 and the upcoming discussion indicate the challenges related to coordination and bureaucracy.

Coordination/Bureaucracy Related Challenges

No Bureaucracy Related Challenges Mean Std. Deviation
1 There is a lack of communication between authorities 3.76 1.087
2 There is a power struggle between ministries/agencies 3.31 .935
3 There is lack of legal powers to implement particular laws 3.33 .975

Cumulative Mean and Standard Deviation 3.47 0.999

Source: Researcher's survey, 2019

The cumulative mean result is 3.47, which is above the average mean. The result reveals a lack of communication between authorities, the existence of a power struggle between ministries/agencies, and also a lack of legal powers to implement particular laws.

Awareness-related challenges

The other category in this challenge section is awareness-related challenges. Being aware of the existing legislation and having the required skills and expertise are crucial for implementation. The following Table 9 and discussion are referring to awareness-related challenges.

Awareness-Related Challenges

No Awareness Related Challenges Mean Std. Deviation
1 There is a lack of awareness about the existing legislation 3.67 1.105
2 There is a lack of key skills and expertise to enforce legislation 3.54 1.055

Cumulative Mean and Standard Deviation 3.61 1.08

Source: Researcher's survey, 2019

The result indicates that there is a lack of awareness about the existing legislations and there is also a lack of key skills and expertise to enforce legislations. As it is indicated in the above table the cumulative mean for the awareness related challenges question is 3.61, which is above the average mean.

Ambiguity

The following Table 10 reveals the existing ambiguity related to tourism legislation.

Ambiguity

No The Ambiguity of Tourism legislation Mean Std. Deviation
1 There is a lack of clear definitions in tourism-related laws and penalties 3.43 1.085
2 There is a lack of clear structure for roles and responsibilities to enforce legislation 3.37 1.022
3 There is a lack of political will 3.50 1.143
4 There are weak laws with feeble penalties 3.43 1.104

Cumulative Mean and Standard Deviation 3.43 1.089

Source: Researcher's survey, 2019

As it is shown in the table above, the cumulative mean of 3.43 shows the existence of different ambiguity-related challenges in tourism legislations of the country. It is possible to generalise that there is a lack of clear definitions in tourism-related laws and penalties; there is a lack of clear structure for roles and responsibilities to enforce legislation; there is a lack of political will and there are weak laws with feeble penalties.

Conclusion and Recommendations
Conclusion

Tourism and hotels are specific economic activities, dynamic and heterogeneous, which provide important income for businesses and the national budget. This is based on the fact that tourism is adaptable to any social activity and such activities can transform into a tourism business. To have optimum activities, certain countries must approve legislation that should be a guarantee of development based on a market economy. Similarly, tourism is a multispectrum and interagency puzzle, due to the impact many sectors have on it. The need for policy coherence and long-term strategic approaches is safeguarded not only by strategies that can easily change with every governmental mandate but also through legislation and legal frameworks.

Poor implementation of legislation can lead to long-term adverse consequences for the society and economy of the destination, including a decline in the area's attraction for tourists. Bearing in mind the above premises, this study investigated barriers to the implementation of tourism policies and tourism-related regulations in Ethiopia. It also assessed the gaps between tourism regulations and their successful implementation, which are key issues for tourist destination development.

The result from the study indicates that the Ethiopian tourism legislation has various shortcomings. Generally, the laws are not suitable for different circumstances of the country; tourism legislation has a low level of acceptability and there is a lack of adequate preparation for the implementation of the legislation. Concerning the challenges for effective implementation of tourism legislation, the study found that there are stakeholder support–related challenges, economic challenges, coordination/bureaucracy–related challenges, and awareness-related challenges, as well as ambiguity.

Recommendations

Tourism legislation is critical to the long-term viability of a destination's economy, culture, and environment. According to the study's findings, there are various awareness gaps and implementation barriers in Ethiopian legislation. Thus, the following recommendations are forwarded to the concerned government bodies.

The government needs to have a political will — a will to truly respect cultural heritages that the people value, a will to protect them, and a will to transfer them to the next generation.

The media has a pivotal role in the dissemination of information regarding tourism policy and related legislation.

The tourism professionals who are working at different levels should strive to maximise their awareness of tourism legislation.

The government should allocate the necessary financial and other resources to alleviate economic challenges for the implementation of tourism legislation.

To cure structural, enforcement and political will–related problems the government should work with other stakeholders and improve the legislations.

Government bodies at different levels should ease the bureaucratic challenges for the successful implementation of legislation.

The media, NGOs, investors, professionals, government agencies and other stakeholders should participate in the preparation and implementation of all tourism legislation.

The government should work on the issues of tourism legislation feasibility, acceptability and suitability.

Economic Challenges

No Economic Challenges Mean Std. Deviation
1 There is a lack of holistic focus on tourism as part of the core economy 3.54 1.136
2 There is concentration on numbers rather than yield 3.66 1.010
3 There is short-term focus on tourism legislation 3.34 1.236
4 There are budget restrictions for enforcement of legislation 3.71 1.159

Cumulative Mean and Standard Deviation 3.56 1.135

Stakeholder Support–Related Challenges

No Stakeholder Support–Related Challenges Mean Std. Deviation
1 There is a lack of integration/coordination with other sectors (Agriculture, trade, transport, etc...) 3.72 1.045
2 There is a lack of integration with other government levels 3.65 1.169
3 There is a lack of participation from other stakeholders 3.68 1.092
4 There is a loss of long-term vision & commitment 3.35 1.134
5 There is a lack of stakeholder involvement 3.48 1.069

Cumulative Mean and Standard Deviation 3.58 1.102

Tourism Legislation Suitability

No Tourism Legislations Suitability Mean Std. Deviation
1 Ethiopian tourism legislation has clearly defined its purpose and method of elaborating 2.93 1.067
2 Ethiopian tourism legislation defines the most relevant target groups 3.03 .975
3 Ethiopian tourism legislation builds on other plans and strategies 2.95 1.005
4 Ethiopian tourism legislation takes into account the impact of selected global factors 2.91 1.122
5 Ethiopian tourism legislation takes into account the impact of selected local factors 3.07 1.141
6 Ethiopian tourism legislation analyses the situation in other destinations 2.82 1.066
7 Ethiopian tourism legislation deals with the internal sources of destination 3.12 1.004
8 Ethiopian tourism legislation evaluates the resources according to their ability to create a competitive advantage 2.81 1.081
9 Ethiopian tourism legislation clearly and understandable summarises the results of particular analyses 2.82 1.077
10 Ethiopian tourism legislation contains a tourism development vision 3.18 1.266
11 Ethiopian tourism legislation has set clear and specific targets 2.93 1.096
12 Ethiopian tourism legislation proposes targets in accordance with the conclusions of proceeded analyses 2.94 .923
13 Ethiopian tourism legislation proposes measures to achieve the vision 2.92 1.037

Cumulative Mean and Standard Deviation 2.956 1.066

Coordination/Bureaucracy Related Challenges

No Bureaucracy Related Challenges Mean Std. Deviation
1 There is a lack of communication between authorities 3.76 1.087
2 There is a power struggle between ministries/agencies 3.31 .935
3 There is lack of legal powers to implement particular laws 3.33 .975

Cumulative Mean and Standard Deviation 3.47 0.999

Reliability Statistics

Reliability StatisticsItems Cronbach's Alpha Number of Items
Tourism legislation suitability .914 13
Tourism legislation acceptability .813 12
Tourism legislation feasibility .746 5
Stakeholder Support .922 5
Economic .924 4
Coordination/Bureaucracy .760 3
Awareness .849 2
Ambiguity .842 4

Tourism Legislation Feasibility

No Tourism Legislations Feasibility Mean Std. Deviation
1 Ethiopian tourism legislation identifies the necessary resources for its implementation 2.73 1.050
2 Ethiopian tourism legislation defines the responsibility of particular entities for their implementation 2.84 1.060
3 Ethiopian tourism legislation defines a timetable for their implementation 2.94 .923
4 Ethiopian tourism legislation proposes a control system of implementation of laws 2.92 1.037
5 Ethiopian tourism legislation proposes the method of updating of laws 2.84 1.000

Cumulative Mean and Standard Deviation 2.85 1.014

Respondents Background Information

Variables Categories of respondents Frequency Per cent
Sex Male 93 63.3
Female 54 36.7
Total 147 100.0

Age 20–29 years 43 29.3
30–39 years 47 32.0
40–49 years 36 24.5
50–59 years 21 14.3
Total 147 100.0

Marital status Single 41 27.9
Married 102 69.4
Divorced 4 2.7
Total 147 100.0

Educational level? Technical and Vocational 2 1.4
First Degree 94 63.9
Postgraduate 51 34.7
Total 147 100.0

Experience Less than 10 years 58 39.5
10–20 years 58 39.5
21–30 years 17 11.6
More than 30 years 14 9.5
Total 147 100.0

Tourism Legislations Acceptability

No Tourism Legislations Acceptability Mean Std. Deviation
1 Ethiopian tourism legislation reflects the requirements of elderly and handicapped travelers 2.84 1.000
2 Ethiopian tourism legislation reflects specific needs of young, individual travelers 2.72 1.058
3 Ethiopian tourism legislation reflects specific needs of busy travelers 2.82 1.073
4 Ethiopian tourism legislation motivates tourism operators to improve service quality 2.95 1.036
5 Ethiopian tourism legislation supports cooperation and coordination of tourism operators 2.97 1.249
6 Ethiopian tourism legislation supports environmental-friendly behavior 2.90 1.268
7 Ethiopian tourism legislation supports tourist experience products 2.42 1.199
8 Ethiopian tourism legislation supports products to improve visitors‘ physical condition 2.82 1.102
9 Ethiopian tourism legislation supports products to increase visitors‘ knowledge 2.65 1.139
10 Ethiopian tourism legislation supports on-line information and reservation systems 2.54 1.172
11 Ethiopian tourism legislation supports integrated communication with target groups of visitors 2.67 1.136
12 Ethiopian tourism legislation supports easy movement of visitors among major attractions in the region. 2.25 1.109

Cumulative meanand Std. Deviation 2.71 1.128

Awareness-Related Challenges

No Awareness Related Challenges Mean Std. Deviation
1 There is a lack of awareness about the existing legislation 3.67 1.105
2 There is a lack of key skills and expertise to enforce legislation 3.54 1.055

Cumulative Mean and Standard Deviation 3.61 1.08

Ambiguity

No The Ambiguity of Tourism legislation Mean Std. Deviation
1 There is a lack of clear definitions in tourism-related laws and penalties 3.43 1.085
2 There is a lack of clear structure for roles and responsibilities to enforce legislation 3.37 1.022
3 There is a lack of political will 3.50 1.143
4 There are weak laws with feeble penalties 3.43 1.104

Cumulative Mean and Standard Deviation 3.43 1.089

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