An additional R494 million (€35.81m) has been allocated for tourism promotion, Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan announced in his 2017 Budget Speech on Wednesday.
The additonal allocation will be welcomed by industry that has long called for government to prioritise the sector.
Gordhan emphasised that tourism was one of the sectors that could be utilised to encourage investment. He said in order to boost investment in the short term, the government must give focused support to labour-intensive sectors, including agriculture, agro-processing and tourism-related services.
“Local initiatives are often the key to progress in tourism and the hospitality industry,” said the Minister, making reference to input from the trade. “Ms Lisa Sheard [Executive Director of Kruger Lowveld Tourism] captured this well in her budget ‘tip’: ‘Tourism encourages ‘pride of place’. Pride of place ensures that the water will run, the streets will be clean, signage will be clear…,”
“Ms Sheard also wrote that ‘Tourism is “woman full”. Women excel and dominate… Tourism instills a good and honest work ethic – it will not make you rich and famous quickly, but it can be very rewarding.’”
Finally, the Minister said that with transformation, the country will see growth. “Growth will strengthen the forces of transformation.”
Credit:South African Tourism Update,