This week’s comment from Cedarberg Africa Co-founder, Kate Bergh, relates to an article highlighting the dire situation South Africa’s tourism industry finds itself in since the outbreak of COVID-19 – including the possibility of a million tourism jobs lost.

“Personally I think we should focus simply on overall jobs lost. The colour of that person\s skin is irrelevant. It will do us no favours if we are seen by the Government to be concerned about skin colour for grants or relief.

We must focus on jobs lost and on taxation lost in our arguments.

As was said, we (the tourism industry) support at least 800 000 jobs and thousands more indirectly. Many are women. Many are in rural areas where there are few other job opportunities.

There is very little regional tourism (even though some seem to think there is) and so we need a well-managed and well-communicated transition from domestic tourism straight into international tourism.

It will not come back quickly but if we are open for business we can at least argue for air access, for us and for our Southern African neighbours.”

Interaction with our readers is an exciting part of what we do at Tourism Update. Reading comments on articles, seeing likes and shares on social media and getting feedback emails are constant reminders of the passionate audience we serve.