In a bit to attract more than five million visitors in the next five years, South African Tourism (SAT) has developed a Five in Five Strategy which seeks to ensure that there is growth in tourism arrivals and further promote campaigns, which seeks to encourage local tourism. For this to come to a realization SAT has also vowed to strengthen its relations with the North West Department of Tourism and its Tourism Board.
SA Tourism is tasked to market and sell South Africa as a preferred tourism destination; it has described the North West province as a unique area which is diverse in culture and heritage. According to SA Tourism, the province has exactly what Tourists wants to experience when visiting. They further encouraged both the Department and the Tourism Board to aggressively market the province and ensure that Tourism becomes the biggest contributor to the Local Economic Development.
The Chief Executive Officer of SA Tourism Sisa Ntshona said the Five in Five Strategy is aimed at increasing the number of international arrivals, targeting local tourists, exploring and marketing the culture and heritage of the province, Targeting townships and many other elements that could be of significant to attract and grow tourism in the next five years. Ntshona anticipates that through the Implementation of the strategy more than five million Tourists will decent to country in the targeted period.
"The strategy will only be possible and successfully implemented if we work together and remain positive. We should put more emphasis on encouraging and marketing the province effectively. Practicing Domestic Tourism and visiting each other before we visit other countries is more critical as we will be building the ambassadorship among ourselves. We have close to 1.2 billion tourists in the world and we as South Africans compete for those tourists because they are our potential market. We do this mainly as Tourism is a key priority sector in growing the economy and has contributed to job creation," said Ntshona.
Ntshona further urged the province to analyze the Performance Agreement Framework which form the areas of collaboration and explore opportunities as per our needs so that a lot of ground is covered in all aspects as required.
The Chief Executive officer of the North West Tourism Board Loselo Segwe, welcomed the strategy by SA Tourism and further committed that the North West Tourism Board which is solely charged with marketing the North West Province as a preferred tourism destination will continue to work with SAT to ensure that the strategy is properly implemented. "We will continue to work with the agency and all other Tourism institutions in and outside the province so that we could realise growth and achievements in making this country and the province to be the number one preferred destination," said Segwe.
Meanwhile, Chief Director of Tourism Growth, Development and Transformation at North West Department of Tourism Sarah Manone echoed the same sentiments. "The MEC and the Department is delighted to be a part of this campaign and contribute on growing tourism within the province. We also welcome the plans that will benefit the growth of the economy and our people, one of those plans is working together with our agency and other institutions within the Tourism value chain. We have been and will continue to ensure that we empower local tourism product owners in the province," said Manone.
The Strategy was presented during a workshop held at Protea Hotel - Marriot (Hunter's Rest hotel) in Rustenburg themed "We DO TOURISM" which is an initiative to grow tourism within the province and the country. Both the North West Tourism Board and Department of Tourism reaffirmed that collaborating with SA Tourism will solidify and strengthen the relationship and synergize programs as well as create awareness on what the country has to offer to the world.
SA Tourism also announced that the country should work harder to retain tourists from the top nine countries like the United Kingdom, India, Germany, the United States of America and other SADC countries like Botswana, Lesotho, Mozambique, Zimbabwe and Malawi.
Issued by: North West Tourism