National Assembly: Cape Town, 20th April 2011
The development of a vibrant tourism industry
should be a top priority of government. Tourism in South Africa has
demonstrated significant growth since 1994 and is fast becoming a
key component of the country's economy. The tourism industry has
perhaps a greater potential than any other single industry, both
directly and indirectly via its multiplier effects, to support at
least two of the main objectives of the New Growth Path, namely
economic growth and job creation.
The IFP recognises the importance of the tourism
industry to the South African economy. It is good to see that the
Departments of Finance and Trade and Industry, as well as the
Cabinet, appear to be increasingly more aware of the fiscal and
other benefits of increased support for tourism.
The government must provide greater support for
the tourism industry through the provision of adequate bulk
infrastructure. This is of particular importance when considering
the scope for heritage and rural tourism. We believe that the job
creation potential of tourism would be of particular benefit to
The government must ensure that tourists are
provided with a safe and secure environment, free from crime,
accidents, disease, dirt and dangerous climatic conditions, animals
and sea creatures. Where this is not possible, adequate warning must
The government must also facilitate development,
especially amongst previously disadvantaged communities and small,
medium and micro enterprises through inter alia the:
Establishment of clear parameters for development;
) Identification of suitable sites;
) Facilitation of development funding opportunities;
) Assistance with the promotion of development opportunities to
) Alignment of tourism development with national
Finally, there may be some benefit in delinking
tourism from environmental affairs and either establishing a
separate ministry, or linking tourism to a mainstream ministry such
as Trade and Industry.
We believe that greater international marketing
support is required in the South African tourism industry. The
direct correlation between marketing expenditure and tourist
arrivals (and thus growth, jobs, tax revenue) is empirically clear, but is not acted
Tourism marketing, in terms of culture, history,
the environment and events, is insufficiently representative of the
country's diversity. This is being addressed by statutory bodies, but
less so by private sector.
Regional co-operation in the international
marketing of tourism products is crucial, but currently inadequate.
Support mechanisms must be improved upon.
Specifically targeted supply side measures are
required, especially for the enhancement of Small, Medium and Micro
Enterprises (SMME's) in the industry.
Tax incentives, access to loan finance,
deregulation and other incentives may play a significant role in
stimulating new enterprises.
At the very least, tourism enterprises should be
given the same status as manufacturing enterprises.
Measures should be adopted to encourage more
representative ownership of the tourism industry at the micro level.
In particular, innovative partnerships with communities (both urban
and rural) must be encouraged, and in certain instances, be
Since service levels in South Africa are generally
uncompetitive, some form of intervention may be required in grading
and training. The entire culture of service needs to be redirected
to ensure greater international competitiveness. Training for the
hospitality and tourism industries must be supported by government.
We support the budget vote.
I thank you.
Mrs Connie Zikalala MP
083 282 8384