Parliament, Friday, 5 May 2017 – The Portfolio Committee on Tourism today received a presentation from the Department of Tourism on its strategic plan for the 2017/2018 year.
The Committee notes that the Department heeded its call to amend its structure, as the International Tourism Programme was seen as a duplication of SA Tourism. The new structure is therefore welcomed. The Committee urges the Department to strengthen its oversight over SA Tourism, as the entity receives 53% of the Department’s budget and does not always subscribe to the prescripts and legislation of government.
The new Destination Development programme is welcomed, as new destinations not usually visited will be introduced under this programme, thereby increasing the number of tourism destinations in South Africa. It is envisaged that five million tourists will be achieved over the next five years and this will have spin-offs for the tourism and related industries, creating much-needed jobs and boosting the economy.
The Committee called on the Department to justify the non-expenditure of some of its budget allocation in the previous financial year, as there are many projects and programmes which require funding and the Department could have put that money to better use. There is much more work to be done to promote domestic tourism, especially in rural and township areas. The Department is encouraged to package destinations in such a way as to encourage South Africans to travel more and appreciate our beautiful country.
ISSUED BY PARLIAMENTARY COMMUNICATION SERVICES ON BEHALF OF THE CHAIRPERSON OF THE PORTFOLIO COMMITTEE ON TOURISM, MS B NGCOBO.
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