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Minister Sisulu meets with executive management at the tourism department
Minister Sisulu meets with executive management at the tourism department

​Minister of Tourism Lindiwe Sisulu, and Deputy Minister Fish Mahlalela, today met with the senior management of the Department of Tourism as she takes over the portfolio to provide leadership on tourism.

Although the tourism sector continues to be heavily impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic, Minister Sisulu is confident that the Department will provide the necessary support that will drive recovery and protect jobs in the sector.

“The tourism sector is the worst affected by COVID – 19, and l want to ensure that we give them all the support we can immediately. We must work together to protect the current tourism jobs as well all the businesses in the sector,” said the Minister.

The Minister added that all black and white-owned businesses in tourism will be supported as the sector navigates its way to recovery amidst the pandemic.

“I have requested the Director-General, with the support of the Deputy Director Generals to recommend actions to support businesses as a matter of urgency guided by the health protocols,” stated Minister Sisulu.

The Minister expressed her appreciation to the Director-General and Team Tourism on the work already done in ensuring a seamless transition in her new role and committed to consider all matters as speedily as possible, to ensure that the industry, stakeholders, and all partners remain confident on the prospects of the recovery of the sector.

“The tourism sector is counting on all of us to reboot the sector urgently. This is a beautiful country and we must get all South Africans to explore it, and also extend it to our international visitors”.

“Among other, the pandemic resulted in the closure of tourism businesses; businesses operating at drastically reduced capacity; massive job losses; the collapse of supply and demand on the domestic and international markets; persistent pressure on the destination brand due to the country’s association with the 501.v2 variant of the COVID-19 virus; and regression of transformation in the tourism sector,” added Sisulu.

The Minister said that the progress in the vaccination, education, and awareness of the COVID-19 virus, is giving confidence that we can start opening our tourism sector as South Africans have done well in the vaccination programme.

Mr. Blessing Manale
Chief Director: Communications
Department of Tourism
Cell: +27 66 487 8867