Boosting United Kingdom tourism arrivals to the Western Cape, and the promotion of the province's Halal industry are the key priorities of Minister Alan Winde's UK trade mission this week.
Minister Winde is accompanied by Wesgro, the province's tourism, trade and investment promotion agency.
The delegation arrives in the United Kingdom today (5 November 2017).
"I am looking forward to further strengthening bilateral trade and tourism links between the UK and the Western Cape. In 2016, the Western Cape exported goods to the United Kingdom worth $628 million. The United Kingdom is the Western Cape's second largest export destination. In 2016, 270 167 tourists from the United Kingdom visited the Western Cape, a 10.4% increase from the previous year," said Minister Winde.
Tim Harris, CEO of Wesgro said "During our mission to the UK, we will be engaging with existing partners and extending our relationship with new partners in the tourism sector during World Travel Market 2017.
There will also be bilateral engagements with the UK Department of International Trade, and we will be meeting with the Halal Food Authority, both of which are key in terms of driving forward our Halal export promotion strategy."
Key engagements during the mission include:
Nelson Mandela Foundation
The Nelson Mandela Foundation extended a special invitation to Minister Winde to attend the WTM. The foundation will update Minister Winde on their latest developments in the UK.
United Nations World Tourism Organisation and World Travel Market (WTM) Ministers Summit
The theme for this year's UNWTO and WTM Ministers Summit is the sustainable development of the tourism sector, as international arrivals reached 1.2 billion in 2016. The summit will discuss responses to address the pressure on natural resources. This topic is particularly relevant to the Western Cape as it is experiencing a prolonged drought.
Pacific Asia Travel Association (PATA)
PATA UK is a network of tourism professionals who promote the Pacific Asia market in the UK. The delegation will brief the association on Halal tourism in the Western Cape.
Halal Food Authority
The Halal Food Authority is a UK-based non-profit organisation which works in the management and supervision of Halal practices in the UK food and beverage industry. The delegation will introduce the HFA to the investment opportunities in the Western Cape's Halal industry.
Old Vines media launch
The Old Vine project seeks to preserve old vineyards in South Africa. Vines, older than 35 years, from across South Africa form part of the initiative. The project will exhibit at the World Travel Market.
The OVP currently has 8 wineries formally signed up and they are spread across a number of regions, namely:
The trade mission is the latest in a series of high-level engagements between the two regions.
In September, UK International Trade Secretary, Dr Liam Fox travelled to South Africa to boost bilateral trade. He announced an additional £1.75 billion in funding for UK companies exporting to South Africa, as well as South African buyers of UK goods and services. Dr Fox met with National Trade and Industry Minister Rob Davies during his visit. As a result of Minister Winde's earlier trade mission to the UK, Dr Fox also met with Minister Winde to further discuss increasing trade, investment and tourism between the Western Cape and the UK.
Issued by: Western Cape Economic Development and Tourism