Minister Marthinus Van Schalkwyk made some opening comments which tied in with the SA Tourism briefing which was to come later. 2011 was a good year for
Domestic tourism comprised of 70% of the tourism value in SA. It was a priority as there were huge socio-economic benefits. The Domestic Tourism Strategy was on the verge of being launched.
SA Tourism briefed the Committee on its Strategic Plan and Budget for 2012-14. The idea at the outset was to link government priorities with SA Tourism’s priorities. Hence detail on the targets of the National Tourism Sector Strategy (NTSS) was presented. The targets for the NTSS were to have 15m foreign arrivals by 2020. It is expected that domestic tourists would grow by 3.4 million from 14.6 million in 2009 to 18 million by 2020 and total trips to grow from 30 million to 54 million, with holiday trips increasing by 5 million. Another target would be to increase tourism’s contribution to the GDP from an estimated R189.4bn in 2009 to R499bn in 2020.The tourism sector was also committed to create 225 000 jobs by 2020, 177 000 in the tourism sector and 48 000 through direct government investment.
Members were given insight into SA Tourism’s research based methodology. The SA Tourism review adopted a “fresh eyes” approach by considering all the countries in the world, and filtering them based on a set of objective attractiveness criteria. The results of the review would illustrate the suggested core, tactical investment and watch-list markets with each region, the regions being Africa &Middle East;
SA Tourism developed five strategies to deliver on the outcome ie invest only in selected markets to deliver volume and value, convince consumers that SA could be trusted to deliver memorable experiences, engage stakeholders to deliver quality visitor experience that re-affirm the brand promise, work the distribution channel to promote SA and to energise and empower the organisation to innovate and achieve excellence. The five strategies have been converted to five programmes to comply with the National Treasury Annual Resource Plan template. Members were given insight into the five SA Tourism programmes.
Members were given detail of air markets in Africa and SA Tourism’s three hub strategy approach which covered East Africa, West Africa and
Domestic Tourism was also elaborated upon. In 2010 there was 29.7m annual trips undertaken compared to 35.9m in 2007. Further figures were provided on domestic tourism spend and the length of trips for the years 2007-2010. The new domestic tourism strategy objective was to segment South African domestic travellers into groups that share similar needs and behaviours, and provide recommendations around the marketing strategy to engage and increase participation of these segments in domestic tourism in SA
Domestic Tourism should be a wholistic approach wherein each stakeholder should play a part ie NDT, SA Tourism, provincial and local authorities and the industry itself.
Due to time constraints SA Tourism could not comprehensively cover all the detail contained in the briefing document. The issue of the budget could also not be covered except to say that expenditure was well within the allocated budget.
The Committee engaged on issues that had been previously highlighted by members in previous meetings however this was an opportunity to put those issues before SA Tourism. The lack of co-operation between national, provincial and local government on tourism, the lack of alignment between SA Tourism and provinces on marketing efforts and the lack of co-ordinated efforts between the NDT and other government departments like for example the Department of Home Affairs and the Department of Education were all concerns raised. Other concerns were whether the curriculum on tourism studies met the needs of the industry. Quality assurances of graded establishments were also questioned. Members also felt that safety and security perceptions of SA abroad needed to be changed. The Committee was glad to hear SA Tourism’s efforts on pursuing opportunities in
The Chairperson welcomed everyone to the meeting in particular Minister Marthinus Van Schalkwyk as well as Deputy Minister Tokozile Xasa. Thereafter, he invited the Minister to address the Committee.
Address by Minister of Tourism
Minister Van Schalkwyk said that tourism was about people and was one of the fastest growing sectors in
Arrival targets for
Domestic tourism comprised of 70% of the tourism value in SA. It was a priority as there were huge socio-economic benefits. The Domestic Tourism Strategy was on the verge of being launched. Research had been done to analyse the domestic tourism sector. Innovative product development was also needed to increase spend. Increase in arrivals had to be translated into economic benefits to South Africans. Travel barriers were also being looked at. The Air Lift Strategy had expired in December 2011. The Department of Transport was the line function department responsible for this function. A new air lift strategy was being finalised and would be going to Cabinet soon. The issue of visa requirements was also being considered. Another important issue was the development and improvement of public and private infrastructure.
SA Tourism Strategic Plan and Budget for 2012-14
SA Tourism briefed the Committee on its Strategic Plan and Budget for 2012-14. The SA Tourism delegation was quite comprehensive but the briefing was mainly undertaken by Mr Thulani Nzima, the Chief Executive Officer. He was assisted by Ms Roshene Singh, Chief Marketing Officer and Mr Frank Kilbourn, Vice Chairperson of the SA Tourism Board, also made inputs where necessary.
Mr Nzima noted that at the end of November 2011, growth sat at 2.7%, taking the impact of the 2010 FIFA Soccer World Cup into consideration the growth rose to 7%. The idea at the outset was to link government priorities with SA Tourism’s priorities. Hence he detailed the targets of the National Tourism Sector Strategy (NTSS). One of the aims was to have 15 million foreign arrivals by 2020. It is expected that domestic tourists would grow by 3.4 million from 14.6 million in 2009 to 18 million by 2020 and total trips to grow from 30 million to 54 million, with holiday trips increasing by 5 million. Another target would be to increase tourism’s contribution to the GDP from an estimated R189.4bn in 2009 to R499bn in 2020. The tourism sector was also committed to create 225 000 jobs by 2020- 177 000 in the tourism sector and 48 000 through direct government investment. Members were given insight into SA Tourism’s research based methodology. The SA Tourism review adopted a “fresh eyes” approach by considering all the countries in the world, and filtering them based on a set of objective attractiveness criteria. The results of the review would illustrate the suggested core, tactical investment and watch-list markets with each region, the regions being Africa &Middle East;
Annual arrivals to SA to increase to 12 068 030 by 2015 (NTSS target) and 15 000 000 by 2020 while the number of domestic tourists per annum should increase to 16m by 2015.
The average spend per arrival in SA from R11 960 to R12 536 per person during the 2012/13 calendar year.
To become the most preferred tourism brand by 2014 by obtaining an average positive brand awareness percentage of 79% in all markets where brand tracking was done.
To deliver on the quality experience expected by the international and domestic tourist by having at least graded 6 172 tourism products in SA by March 2013.
To continuously improve internal policies, procedures and business processes so that it supports the spending of no less than 98% or no more than 102% of its consolidated annual approved budget as well as the achievement of clean annual audit reports.
To grow SA’s business events industry, and continuously improve the culture within the organisation by living the SA Tourism values and thereby reduce its average annual turnover rate to no more than 10% while achieving an average score of at least 3.3 in the Deloitte Best Company to Work for survey.
Members were given an overview of air markets in Africa and SA Tourism’s three hub strategy approach which covered East Africa, West Africa and
Domestic Tourism was also elaborated upon. In 2010 there was 29.7m annual trips undertaken compared to 35.9m in 2007. Further figures were provided on domestic tourism spend and the length of trips for the years 2007 - 2010. Keeping in mind the targets set out in the NTSS, it was important to identify the most attractive segments on which to focus activation efforts for domestic tourism. The new domestic tourism strategy objective was to segment South African domestic travellers into groups that share similar needs and behaviours, and provide recommendations around the marketing strategy to engage and increase participation of these segments in domestic tourism in SA. This would enable SA Tourism to meet its key objectives around tourism culture transformation and growth. Domestic Tourism should be a holistic approach wherein each stakeholder should play a part ie NDT, SA Tourism, provincial and local authorities and the industry itself.
Due to time constraints SA Tourism could not comprehensively cover all the detail contained in the briefing document. Specifics on the budget could not be covered. Mr Nzima did venture to say that SA Tourism did well in keeping within its budget. Additional funding received for expenditure on
The Chairperson asked how SA Tourism intended to increase the average spend per tourist in SA. He stated that national, provincial and local government did not have a joint marketing strategy. What plans did SA Tourism have to harmonise the relationship? He also asked what SA Tourism had done about addressing the perceptions that tourists had about safety and security in SA.
Mr Nzima made sure that SA Tourism focused on product development. The focus was on packaging rather than on day selling. When offerings were in package form it was more affordable and hence tourists had more cash to spend. Average spend would increase if visa costs, transport costs, hotel costs and restaurant costs were more affordable. A holistic approach was needed. SA Tourism had a product development team. A great deal of work was being done on safety and security. Tourists had to have a positive image of SA. It was a serious challenge on how to handle it. The idea was not to have a full force campaign. The success of the 2010 FIFA World Cup was evident that it was just a perception, but people nevertheless came to SA. SA should have capitalised more on the success of the 2010 FIFA World Cup. SA needed to send out a message that it was a good destination and not necessarily a safe destination. SA Tourism looked at quick interventions to address the issue.
Mr R Shah (DA) felt that education was key for the development of the tourism sector. Students who graduated from tourism studies were not adequately trained and could not find jobs. Continuous human resources refreshing were needed. The tourism curriculum was not meeting the needs of the industry. He asked what SA Tourism was doing about tourism education in schools. There was a lack of tourism culture in SA. There was a lack of alignment between SA Tourism and provincial agencies in marketing efforts. There seemed to be a mismatch. Was SA Tourism competing with provincial agencies? There was also a lack of co-ordinated effort between the national, provincial and local government spheres. He suggested that the regulatory environment of tourism should be looked at so as to promote Small Medium Micro Enterprises (SMMEs). There was furthermore a lack of co-ordinated effort amongst government departments themselves as tourism was cross cutting. Tourism affected the Department of International Relations and Cooperation (DIRCO) for example. Did SA Tourism work with DIRCO? He was not convinced whether SA Tourism’s brand slogan was saying what it should.
Mr Nzima stated that SA Tourism took the bridging gap very seriously. SA Tourism had an internship programme of its own. For those students who did well in the programme SA Tourism offered jobs to them. He acknowledged that tourism should be taught to kids early on already. The issue of the regulatory framework and SMMEs was important and spoke to the distribution channel. There were low barriers of entry in tourism. By sheer creativity of one’s mind one could join the industry. The private sector should be encouraged to embrace SMMEs. SA Tourism encouraged the support of SMMEs. SA Tourism embraced SMMEs from a supplier and procurement point of view.
The issue of how tourism impacted upon other government departments like Home Affairs and Education for example and the synergy that was needed required engagement from everybody in the value chain. SA Tourism engaged with government departments. It worked closely with DIRCO.
Mr Kilbourn spoke to the issues of brand alignment and alignment with national, provincial and local governments and noted that it had been a challenge in the past. Progress was being made. MinMECS would be used to drive the message through. There should not be a multiplicity of efforts by the different spheres of government. He explained that the new payline of SA Tourism “inspiring new ways” had come about through a collective government effort. The NDT, the Department of Trade and Industry and everyone else in government had no objection to it and could live with it. It even came to Parliament for approval. All other paylines used by various countries had to be ruled out hence the compromise was to settle on “inspiring new ways”. The payline had to be one which various departments could align with.
Mr Nzima referred to the alignment of efforts on branding by provinces and municipalities and stated that a committee had been set up by the NDT. SA Tourism took the lead in the committee. Chief Executive Officers of organisations in the tourism industry sat on the committee. Regular meetings were held to discuss the issue of alignment. The first point of departure was the NTSS. Thereafter barriers were identified. Once barriers were identified lobbying followed. The idea was to prevent the duplication of activities. A national calendar of events was shared. The role of SA Tourism and of the provinces was considered. It was important for alignment to have synergy.
Brand alignment had already been completed. Everyone had the same logo. A duplication of activities was what needed to be prevented so that resources could be better utilised.
Mr S Farrow (DA) stated that Tourism was one of the most cross cutting ministries in government. For example in the
Job creation in tourism was key as it was even mentioned in the President’s 2012 State of the Nation Address. At present there was one job created for every sixteen tourists. He agreed with Mr Shah that SA Tourism’s new catchphrase “inspiring new ways” did not seem good enough.
Concern was also raised about whether graded establishments were actually meeting the standards for what they were graded. He had visited supposed 5 star establishments which did not seem to meet even 3 star quality requirements. Was there a regulatory body in place to check on whether graded establishments were meeting the requirements of their grade? Another function of a regulatory body would be to check that establishments were not also pricing themselves out of reach of tourists because they were graded highly.
The biggest cost visiting SA was the cost of the airfare. SA should perhaps offer packages that would make it more attractive to come to SA. The packages could include visits to other sites in Africa like the
Mr Nzima, referring to quality control of the Grading Council, stated that there was an independent body which performed the function. There was an auditor which audited graded establishments.
On the issue of offering tourists value for money, everyone involved should come on board.
SA Tourism was engaging with SANParks to address the outstanding isues.
Ms C Zikalala (IFP) was very impressed that the rest of the African continent was visiting SA.
Ms M Njobe (COPE) stated that it was unfortunate that the Committee could not have met with SA Tourism the entire day as the allocated time for the meeting was far too short. She was happy about the organisation’s efforts on domestic tourism and the greater emphasis on
Ms Njobe asked how successful the roadshow on grading had been. Who were SA’s competitors in relation to tourism? On a recent visit to
On the issue of safety and security there should be greater alignment between national, provincial and local governments. She stated that she had been embarrassed by the raping of two Swedish tourists in the
Mr Kilbourn explained that the additional budget allocated was for use in the expansion of new markets in
Mr F Bhengu (ANC) stated that many issues had been raised and that some would have to be directed to the NDT. On some of the issues the Committee would have to make recommendations as to what needed to be done. He was glad that SA Tourism was working closely with the NDT. The passion that drove SA was its history. Sometimes “we as SA forget where we come from”. Did tourism in SA speak to SA’s history? He referred to SA Tourism’s logo and stated that perhaps the whole of SA could contribute as to what it should be. There could be a drive to come up with the best option.
Members have listened; it was now time to engage the NDT and to make recommendations.
Mr Nzima stated that SA Tourism sold the historical importance of the country very aggressively. SA’s variety was its uniqueness. SA Tourism embraced SA’s historical importance.
Mr Shah asked why could a facility not be developed for when a tourist visited a neighbouring country like Botswana and had obtained a visa, then the same visa could also grant them access to SA and vice versa. If one travelled to the
The Chairperson responded that the issue of visas was not within the mandate of SA Tourism. The point was noted nevertheless. He expressed concern about the proliferation of fake grading plaques. The fake looked very similar to the genuine plaque. The proposed Tourism Bill which the Committee was still waiting on would address this matter. On the issue of crime, correct perceptions should be created. There seems to be a small percentage of crimes related to tourists. Even in the
Due to time constraints the Committee postponed the consideration of minutes until another time.
The meeting was adjourned.
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