South Africa: Tourism Minister appoints Expert Panel to help review  Tourism Policies

The Minister of Tourism, Mmamoloko Kubayi-Ngubane, has appointed a panel of experts to help review the current tourism policies and develop a new policy direction for the tourism sector.

The seven-member Advisory Panel, comprising of experts with diverse knowledge in the sector and the economy, will review all our existing policies, provide guidance to the Minister over a twelve-month period, with a view to developing a new comprehensive and overarching tourism policy framework to guide the sector to new heights.

As part of its work, the panel will bring into sharp focus transformation, travel facilitation and regulatory barriers, tourism safety, quality assurance, tourist guiding, tour operators and travel agencies, technological development, product or infrastructure development and conferences bidding and support. Other focus areas include knowledge management, best practices, responsible tourism and sustainable tourism.

“The panel will ensure alignment between proposed policy and government plans and through this policy review, we aim to reposition the tourism sector towards a new trajectory by unlocking its full potential. It is my firm belief that this crucial work will go a long way in increasing our sector’s contribution to our economy, which finds itself at its weakest since the advent of the Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic” said Minister Kubayi-Ngubane.

A meeting with the panel was convened recently at which all of the members expressed gratitude and committed to be the anchor in our bid as a government to close the glaring policy gap. The 1996 Tourism White Paper on the development and Promotion of Tourism in South Africa, for example, remains the overarching policy framework but it was updated over two decades ago (24 years ago) – this requires some reflection.

Minister Kubayi-Ngubane added: “I’m looking forward to working with the panel members who will help me steer the ship to the right direction. The tourism sector has an intricate value chain which is continuously impacted by global policy developments, necessitating a comprehensive review of tourism policy in South Africa. Most notably, global and local trends have emerged in the past two decades and we need cutting-edge knowledge to thrive and respond adequately to technological development to avoid becoming obsolete.”

Click here to read more about the members of the panel

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