Botswana lifts hunting ban on elephants. How will this affect tourism?

Botswana lifts hunting ban on elephants. How will this affect tourism?

In a move that former president of Botswana, Ian Khama, has criticised and labelled a political manoeuvre to win important votes before the October elections, Botswana has lifted its ban on hunting. This suspension lasted a total of 5 years.

In June 2018 a committee, made up mostly of local authorities and industry representatives, was put together to advise on the lifting of the ban. This was considered due to the perceived negative impact that the hunting suspension had on livelihoods, particularly for community based organisations. They also noted that the Botswanan Department of Wildlife was taking too long to manage problem animals that were destroying their crops and putting their lives at risk on a daily basis.

Botswana is home to more than 130 000 elephants, almost a third of the continents savanna elephants. One wonders if there will be an international backlash, in the form of travel, to the country in light of this new development.

Second to diamond mining, Botswana’s economy is driven by tourism.

What are your thoughts?