Department of Tourism
A Tourism War Room has been set up to expedite implementation of the Tourism Sector Recovery Plan (TSRP).
In a statement, the tourism department confirmed that stakeholders in the War Room include members of the industry and all relevant government departments.
Cabinet gave the green light to the TSRP in April 2021.
In an earlier statement, cabinet described the Plan as representing the “collective response by government and the tourism sector to the devastation caused by the COVID-19 pandemic”.
The TSRP was published for comment in August 2020.
It is anchored on three pillars, namely, protect and rejuvenate the supply of tourism products and services; re-ignite demand and strengthen enabling capability for long-term sustainability.
Recommendations outlined in the TSRP include concluding a comprehensive industry/government recovery partnership to collaborate on all aspects of tourism recovery guided by the recovery Plan; introducing national Norms and Standards for safe tourism operations; boosting domestic demand with messages that encourage safe tourism and domestic vacation experiences; reigniting international demand via a global marketing and travel trade programme and attracting private sector investment through an investment drive.
Achievements of the TSRP thus far include implementing approved Tourism Norms and Standards for safe operations across the value chain; the development and maintenance of 100 state and community-based tourism assets across the country; piloting of an E-Visa system in Kenya with phase one activation to be extended to 15 other countries by March 2022; seven bids for R64 million secured for events to be hosted between 2022 and 2025; distressed tourism assets identified to form part of the Investment Promotion Support Programme and the SADC Tourism Strategy and Action Plan ready for consideration by the responsible SADC Committee of Ministers.
The department declared that the outlook for South Africa’s tourism sector is optimistic.
Replying to parliamentary questions, the tourism minister, Lindiwe Sisulu, acknowledged that the vaccination campaign would further boost trade and market confidence in destination South Africa.
“With all health protocols in place, we will continue to rise to the occasion in fighting COVID-19 including the anticipated 4th wave in the New Year”, she said.