Heeding the call for improved communications with the tourism industry, the Ministry of Tourism is working on establishing a Tourism Services Call Centre where affected businesses can get information on the available relief measures, postponements of events and more.

“It will also act as a helpline for tourists,” said the Minister of Tourism, Mmamoloko Kubayi-Ngubane.

“We have met with industry stakeholders to find solutions in response to the crisis that confronts us and we wish to reiterate the importance of strong public-private partnerships and greater co-operation in order to respond and overcome the challenges faced by the sector during the management and recovery from COVID-19,” she added.

Meanwhile, she has provided further details on the R200 million (€10.63m) SMME Relief Fund.

In line with the Department’s Amended Codes on BBB-EE the following categories will apply:

  • Accommodation: Hotels; resort properties and bed and breakfast (B&Bs)
  • Hospitality and Related Services: Restaurants (not attached to hotels); conference venues (not attached to hotels), professional catering; and attractions
  • Travel and Related Services: Tour operators; travel agents; tourist guides; car rental companies; and coach operators.

“There will also be an equitable balance between businesses that are in the tourism incentive programme of the Department of Tourism and businesses that are not benefiting from such programmes through a transparent application process and criteria as outlined above,” the Minister said.

Application qualifying criteria

  • Must be a formally registered business with Companies and Intellectual Property Commission (CIPC).
  • Turnover must not exceed R2.5 million (€133 000) per year.
  • Must have a valid tax clearance certificate.
  • Guaranteed employment for a minimum number of staff for a period of three months.
  • Proof of minimum wage compliance.
  • Must provide proof of UIF registration for employees employed by the business.
  • Be an existing tourism-specific establishment as outline in the scope of application (suppliers and intermediaries are not eligible).
  • Must be in existence for at least one business financial year.
  • Prove that the relief is required as a result of the impact of COVID-19.
  • Must submit statements of financial position; over 12 months’ bank statement, balance sheet, income statements, cashflow statements.
  • Indicate the intended use of the resources.

Delivery mechanisms

  • The relief will be distributed in a spatially equitable manner to ensure that all provinces benefit.
  • At least 70% of beneficiaries will be businesses that are black owned.
  • At least 50% of beneficiaries will be businesses that are women owned.
  • At least 30% of beneficiaries will be businesses that are youth owned.
  • At least 4% of beneficiaries will be businesses that are owned by people with disabilities.