Namibia is a post-Apartheid nation and has been independent of South Africa for nearly 30 years.

However huge imbalances of wealth and ownership remain.

In Namibia, the tourist industry accounts for something like 15% of Namibia's GDP, and nearly 20% of employment. The industry is heavily based on land ownership - the places where tourists stay and spend their money tend to be on privately-owned land.

Namibia suffered centuries of colonial subjugation, including the forcible removal of native people from the land and much, much worse, followed by Apartheid. One legacy if this is that very visibly, the vast majority of the tourist industry is owned by white people with European names, who employ black people (who serve mostly white tourists).

(In addition, historically, a large proportion of Namibia's GDP has left the country through the foreign ownership of industry, though I don't know to what extent this affects the tourist industry.)

What would be good ways for a foreign traveller in Namibia to help ensure as far as possible that the money they spend as tourists remains in the country, and that it supports businesses that are not just locally-owned, but also owned by historically disadvantaged segments of the population?

  • 2
    Why the downvotes people?
    – JoErNanO
    Jan 11, 2019 at 17:06
  • 2
    I would assume patronizing smaller vendors for arts and crafts and staying in standalone local hotels (some of which have excellent service) instead of international chains will go some ways to make you comfortable. Jan 11, 2019 at 17:08
  • 1
    @JoErNanO I conjecture some people may be sensitive to any kind of political talk or questions that reinforce the truth that indigenous populations have been exploited by western colonizers. Can never really tell. Jan 11, 2019 at 17:10
  • 4
    I didn't downvote, but only the last paragraph seems relevant to the question. One's personal reasons for wanting to support local industry and initiatives and disadvantaged groups is ... well this is not the place. Jan 11, 2019 at 17:24
  • 3
    While I am not yet ready to close or delete this question or do a serious edit, I feel it would be a much better question if a lot of the historical information is contracted to a single line (like 'suffered for centuries'). As it stands it is very much a rant and not so much a question people are ready to answer.
    – Willeke
    Jan 12, 2019 at 10:03


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