Industry must lobby against government’s continuous, highly damaging speculations on completely irrational timelines, writes Angela Matthews, Director of Alpha Destinations in response to yesterday’s Tourism Update article about one million tourism jobs likely to be lost.
Here is her full letter:
In my opinion, one of our biggest problems is that we have somebody representing the travel industry in government who has no understanding of the industry, of who and how many it employs, which other industries it affects directly, what it contributes directly and indirectly to the GDP, and the devastating effects beyond recovery a longer lockdown will have.
Yes, we must lobby. Now. Relentlessly. The tourism industry deserves to be taken seriously as one of the most important contributors to job creation and a healthy economy.
It deserves to be represented in government by somebody who understands all the implications of the drawn-out lockdown, who is willing to actively engage with the industry to find solutions and to fight our case. Not in six or eight months, but right now. Time is running out.
We must lobby against government’s continuous, highly damaging speculations on completely irrational timelines. We owe this not only to South Africa, but also to our neighbouring countries who rely on our open borders to get visitors to their destinations.