Transformation in tourism under the spotlight
30 Sep 2021
The deputy minister of tourism, Fish Mahlalela, has declared that tourism in South Africa can only transform “if all tourism stakeholders work together to make it more inclusive”.
The deputy minister was speaking at World Tourism Day Celebrations in Clarens in the Free State.
He pointed out that a Tourism Policy Review Panel has been working on various “issue papers” to drive discussion around policy in the areas of shared economy, digitization, grading, service excellence and transformation.
According to the deputy minister, government has “taken an unapologetic policy position of fostering transformation and black economic empowerment in the tourism sector”.
He added that government sees transformation as a “necessary tool for nation building and social cohesion which helps us redress the imbalances of the past”.
The plan is also to broaden the scope of tourism sub-sectors to include other sub-sectors such as rural and township tourism, cultural and sports tourism.
The deputy minister also called on national, provincial and local government to collaborate with the private sector and civil society organisations in rejuvenating tourism.
He emphasized that government is rolling out measures to strengthen the quality of tourism offerings.
Norms and standards approved by cabinet will be gazetted on 1 November 2021 prior to the festive season.
As regards vaccine passports, the deputy minister indicated that government and social partners are discussing the form this passport or certificate should take in accordance with international trends.
“This might simply mean a proof of vaccination in a format that is not forged or altered, and will be developed specifically to integrate with information of all official vaccinations and test types, including PCR and rapid tests,” he said.
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