Botswana pulls off 2nd Batho Fashion Week, amid huge economic impact 


The 2023 edition of the Batho Fashion Week has been held in Botswana’s tourist haven of Kasane.

The fashion week featured an array of activities including masterclasses by industry experts, networking opportunities, and a showcase of Botswana’s varied fashion industry.

From captivating designs to vibrant expressions of heritage, it was a celebration of style like no other. The 3-day clothing show celebrated fashion designers, models, and creatives from all over the world.
Batho Fashion Week is the only fashion week in Botswana.

The first night of Batho Fashion Week, which is the only fashion week in Botswana, dazzled with an extraordinary display of fashion and culture that left patrons in awe.

The show is aimed at diversifying the economy of Botswana (tourism sector) by tapping into fashion tourism, an area that remains very limited.

The event is held annually in Kasane, where four countries meet (Botswana, Namibia, Zimbabwe, and Zambia), which is also the most-visited tourist town by international travelers because of its diverse wildlife.

At this year’s event, Botswana’s Minister of Tourism, Philda Nani Kereng called on the on Batho Fashion Week organisers to tap into the power of fashion tourism and turn Botswana into a premier destination for fashion enthusiasts from across the world. According to her, the event can be a powerful force for economic diversification and sustainable development as it has done in other economies around the world including in the African continent.

“This momentous occasion speaks to our revised Tourism Policy which seeks to expand our tourism products across sectors of the economy including the fashion industry,” the Minister stated.

Philda Kereng also indicated that her Ministry is currently developing the MICE strategy aimed at promoting Botswana as a destination of choice for international event thus the event is in line with the pending strategy.

Organisers of the event maintained that Batho Fashion Week is not merely a celebration of fashion, ”but a revolution towards economic diversification. Our mission is to tap into the yet unexplored realm of fashion tourism and turn it into an economic powerhouse for Botswana.’’

“The event encapsulates the rich cultural heritage of Botswana and Africa while fostering fashion sustainability and cultural preservation.”Our unique approach integrates traditional craftsmanship with contemporary fashion, promoting knowledge transfer and ensuring that our traditional textile wisdom transcends generations,” the organisers said further.

However, this year’s edition had 16 designers comprising of 10 locals and 6 internationals, who came from the USA, Namibia, Mozambique, South Africa, and Kenya. There were also 30 models introducing the spring/summer collection.

Batho Fashion was founded in 2021, as a platform to empower local communities to benefit from tourism in a lasting way and diversify the economy from wildlife only to fashion tourism. Part of the proceeds from the annual event go towards supporting families that have been affected by human-wildlife conflict.

With the global fashion industry valued at $1.53 trillion as of 2022 (Statista, 2023), fashion industry presents potential worth the country diversifying its tourism to include fashion.

Click here to view the pictures from the event


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