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WC Tourism Comeback after Visa Concessions

By Beverley Schäfer, MPP
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The DA in the Western Cape is pleased that the job-creating tourism sector has succeeded in fighting back against the onerous Visa Regulations. The newly released tourism numbers for the summer season indicates that nearly 15 000 more international visitors went through the Cape Town International airport, an increase of 4.5%. This comes after the tourism industry having been under attack. In 2014 and 2015 the National Minister of Home Affairs, Malusi Gigaba’s onerous Visa Regulations caused the numbers to drop.

It is especially encouraging that the number of visitors to Robben Island has increased by 24.7% from season. In my capacity as the Chairperson of the Standing Committee on Economic Opportunities, Tourism and Agriculture in the Western Cape Provincial Parliament, I will invite representatives from the Coega Development Corporation to the Standing Committee to present their management and improvement plans. This following reports that that Robben Island, along with several other Western Cape tourist sites, has been handed over to Coega for maintenance and upgrades.

The Western Cape Provincial Parliament has continued to call for a scrapping of the onerous visa regulations, particularly the unabridged birth certificates. The National Minister of Tourism, Derek Hanekom has also taken a firm stance against the implementation of the unabridged certificates, which was reiterated in the latest edition of the Sunday Argus.

The Standing Committee on Economic Opportunities, Tourism and Agriculture tabled a report in 2014, which indicated that most child trafficking occurs inside the country and across land borders. Minster Hanekom has reported the same. This means that child trafficking cannot be curbed by visa regulations. The committee report was tabled after a series of public hearings. The report calls for the scrapping of the regulations until such time as a full Regulatory Impact Assessment of the legislation on the economy is completed. It stands to reason that if this had this been conducted prior to the regulations being promulgated, we would not have had such a negative impact on the tourism sector to begin with.

The DA welcomes the positive developments in the tourism sector, and will continue to do all we can in support of a growing economy that enables people to access jobs.

Media enquiries
Beverley Schäfer, MPP
DA Western Cape Spokesperson on Economic Opportunities, Tourism and Agriculture

083 598 3676
DA-Persverklaring deur Beverley Schäfer, LPP

DA-Wes-Kaapse Woordvoerder oor Ekonomiese Geleenthede, Toerisme en Landbou

Wes-Kaapse Toerisme herlewing ná Visa-toegewings

19 April 2016
Vrystelling: Onmiddellik
Die DA in die Wes-Kaap is in sy skik dat die toerismesektor daarin geslaag het om die negatiewe uitwerking van die Visa-regulasies suksesvol te bekamp. Die jongste aanduidings is dat daar bykans 15 000 meer internasionale toeriste deur die Kaapstadse Internasionale Lughawe tydens die onlangse somerseisoen hanteer is. Dit dui op ‘n toename van 4,5% toeriste ondanks die aanslag op die toerismebedryf. In 2014 en 2015 het die Nasionale Minister van Binnelandse Sake, Malusi Gigaba, bykomende Visa-regulasies ingestel wat veroorsaak het dat die besoekergetalle dramaties afgeneem het.

Dit is veral bemoedigend dat die aantal toeriste wat Robbeneiland besoek het, sedertdien met 24,7% toegeneem het. In my hoedanigheid as die Wes-Kaapse Provinsiale Parlement se Voorsitter van die Staande Komitee oor Ekonomiese Geleenthede, Toerisme en Landbou, sal ek verteenwoordigers van die Coega-ontwikkelingskorporasie nooi om hul bestuurs- en verbeteringsplanne aan die Staande Komitee voor te lê. Hierdie versoek word gerig na aanleiding van berigte dat Robbeneiland en verskeie ander Wes-Kaapse toeriste-aantreklikhede aan Coega toevertrou is vir die nodige instandhouding en opgradering.

Die Wes-Kaapse Provinsiale Parlement het daarop aangedring dat bykomende visumregulasies afgeskaf word, veral dié van volledige geboortesertifikate. Die Nasionale Minister van Toerisme, Derek Hanekom, het ook sterk standpunt téén die implementering van die volledige geboortesertifikate ingeneem, soos dit in die jongste uitgawe van die Sunday Argus gepubliseer is.

Die Staande Komitee oor Ekonomiese Geleenthede, Toerisme en Landbou het 'n verslag in 2014 ter tafel gelê, wat daarop dui dat die meeste kinderhandel binne-in die land en regoor die land se grense plaasvind. Minister Hanekom se verslag het ook tot daardie bevinding gemaak. Dit beteken dat visumregulasies nie kinderhandel stop nie. Die Komiteeverslag is ná 'n reeks openbare verhore ter tafel gelê. Die verslag doen 'n beroep daarop dat bykomende regulasies afskaf word totdat daar 'n volledige reguleringsimpakbeoordeling van die wetgewing op die ekonomie voltooi is. Dit is vanselfsprekend dat indien hierdie impakstudie deurgevoer sou word voordat die regulasies geproklameer was, die negatiewe impak op die toerismesektor nie so groot sou gewees het nie.

Die DA verwelkom die positiewe ontwikkeling in die toerismesektor, en sal voortgaan om alles in ons vermoë te doen om die groeiende ekonomie te ondersteun sodat daar toegang tot werksgeleenthede is.