For the week ending 16 September 2016
Welcome to this week’s edition of the TBCSA’s Week in Review. What’s Up in this Weeks Review? We start this week’s edition with sad news of the passing of one of our long standing industry colleagues, Ms Vanessa Sand. In this week’s parliamentary section, we bring you an update from the DHA-TBCSA board stakeholder session. From BUSA, we provide you with updates from the trade, transport and logistics sub-committee as well as an EconPol standing committee meeting. We then proceed to update you on the Tourism Symposium at Tukkies (University of Pretoria) and also the NTCE media launch. From the safety and security section, we provide an update on the Tsi meeting we hosted and a fraud alert for accommodation establishments to note. We then share with you links to the recently released NDT and SAT 2015/16 annual reports, and also remind you to consider attending the 17th annual CITES conference, taking place later in September. On our regular updates, we reveal the date for the announcement of the grand prize winner of the TOMSA/ Finders Keepers; share links to the latest industry news and upcoming events for your diaries.
INDUSTRY MARKETING LEGEND MS VANESSA SAND SADLY PASSES ON
It is with sadness that we share with you the news of the passing of industry legend and former member of the TBCSA board, Ms Vanessa Sand. Ms Sand endured a long battle with cancer and passed away on 14 September 2016. Ms Sand will be remembered for her time at the helm of the AA Travel Guides Association, where she was behind a number of industry first initiatives, such as launching South Africa’s largest online accommodation and travel database. Ms Sand will also be remembered for her extensive industry experience and publishing of her book calledHospitality Management and Marketing. We wish to convey our deep condolences to the Sand family, her colleagues and friends.
THE DHA ENGAGES WITH THE TBCSA BOARD MEMBERS ON 15 SEPTEMBER 2016
The Deputy Director General on Immigration in the Department of Home Affairs, Mr Jacky McKay, met with members of the TBCSA board to deliver a presentation on the Green Paper on International Migration. As part of the meeting, Mr McKay provided members with an information update on key issues on the Immigration regulations as follows:
UNABRIGED BIRTH CERITIFICATES
On the matter of when the DHA is going to make some announcement on the relaxation of the UBC requirements for visa exempt countries, Mr McKay told the meeting that he was unable to provide any update. He mentioned that this was because there was an imminent government gazette on the regulations and that the Home Affairs DG was due to hold briefings with stakeholders on the UBC regulations and other pronouncements of the IMC.
On the matter of the resolving the debacle of visas for language school’s students, he mentioned that the DHA and the Department of Higher Education and Training are working at it. You may recall that the issue emanates from the new immigration regulations of 2015, which do not offer visas to students who want to come into the country for foreign language training. Since the matter is already before the Courts, the meeting agreed to leave it at that until the court process has been completed.
CONGESTION AT ORTIA:
On the issue of resolving the congestion at ORTIA mainly (and other airports especially at peak season), Mr McKay told the meeting that the DHA can do very little to ease the problem as they have budget constraints. This budget constraint prevent them from filling vacant posts within the department and as such, they will continue to do the best staff scheduling that they can master. It was resolved therefore that the TBCSA Secretariat should convene a follow-up meeting with Mr McKay and his team to find ways in which the industry can come to the assistance of the DHA. The same meeting will be used to discuss ways to resolve the requirement for the accommodation establishments to make and keep ID copies of their South African guests. This regulation as contained in the Immigration regulations, is proving to be a challenge for the accommodation industry to implement due to the cost implications, especially for smaller establishments.
GREEN PAPER ON INTERNATIONAL MIGRATION:
On the presentation that Mr McKay delivered, it was agreed that members would send their inputs and comments to the Secretariat in time for Tebogo to collate them and send to BUSA and the relevant office in Parliament. To this end, during the course of this week, we will send you the draft comment document on the Green Paper for you to input and comment on.
FEEDBACK: ECONOMIC POLICY (ECONPOL) STANDING COMMITTEE MEETING
On Tuesday 13 September, we participated in an EconPol meeting at BUSA. Among the topics of discussion was a suggestion by the tax sub-committee that a letter be sent to the Minister of Finance requesting high-level meetings to engage on common areas of interest by business through BUSA. EconPol decided that businesses should raise pressing tax and policy issues so as to inform the Medium Term Budget Statement, which will be presented by the Minister of Finance on 26 October 2016. Such issues including pressures, which could have a negative effect on the industry could also feed into the finance minister’s budget speech for 2017. To this end, we are asking if anyone of you have any tax and policy issues you would like us to bring forth at BUSA in this regard, please email Ms Tebogo Umanah on Tebogo@tbcsa.travel. The meeting also discussed the Youth Employment Tax Initiative currently being considered at Nedlac. BUSA’s position on this is that it is a positive incentive that needs to be extended for two years, after which a comprehensive review of the scheme should be carried out. The meeting then discussed the matter of the Learnership tax incentive, which is under review at Nedlac. On this matter, it was noted that business would need to persuade labour on the importance of the incentive for Treasury to consider extending it. Lastly, on the National Minimum Wage, business awaits a report of the panel that was appointed to deal with this matter.
FEEDBACK: SUB-COMMITTEE MEETING ON TRADE, TRANSPORT AND LOGISTICS
On Tuesday 13 September, we participated in the BUSA sub-committee on trade, transport and logistics. The sub committee falls under the ECONPOL standing committee structures. Of note was the fact that members of the sub-committee, including the TBCSA, have made substantive comments on the Road Safety Strategy whose engagement in the Nedlac chambers took place on 15 September 2016. There are issues in the strategy that the sub-committee, and in particular, SAVRALA members have raised over the years, which also relate to AARTO that have never been resolved. In this regard, it was resolved that a letter would be sent to the Minister of Transport to enquire about progress on the said input from business. It is understood that the DoT want to incorporate the e-tolls into AARTO, which business does not agree with. On the Border Management Authority (BMA) Bill, comments from all stakeholders including the TBCSA were submitted on 08 September 2016. To this end, the Minister of Home Affairs has already briefed the Portfolio committee on the concerns raised around the BMA. As explained by Mr McKay during the board meeting, the Border Management Authority is envisaged to be an integrated entity, which would look after the entire management of SA’s ports of entry. Both BUSA and TBCSA have noted that public hearings on the BMA have been concluded with neither organisations picking up the parliamentary through the regular channels. There was also a discussion on the Green Transport Strategy paper, which the sub committee will distribute in due course for members to make inputs and comments.
BUSA INVITE: TRADING AND DOING BUSINESS IN MOZAMBIQUE EVENT
Our colleagues at BUSA have requested us to share an invite to a trading and how to do business in Mozambique event hosted by the Ekurhuleni North Chamber of Commerce and Industry on Thursday 22 September. Mozambique is undoubtedly a priority market for South African exporters and investors and if you have investment interests in Mozambique, this event is for you. As a TBCSA member you get preferential BUSA rates to attend the event. Click Here for more information.
UPDATE: TOURISM SYMPOSIUM AT UNIVERSITY OF PRETORIA
We participated in the Tourism symposium organised by the University of Pretoria’s Tourism Division that took place on 09 September 2016. Speakers included the Minister of Tourism and Professor Dimitrios Buhalis – one of the world’s leading academics on travel and tourism. There were also leaders from the tourism private sector who addressed topics such as Universal Accessibility; Regional Accessibility; ‘Entry’ Accessibility; as well as Air and Transport Accessibility. Many speakers emphasised that there is a need for government, private and social sectors to collaborate and prioritise accessibility of tourism products and services for all, which will subsequently also lead to tourism growth in South Africa. Another highlight of the symposium was the SANParks presentation on how they are advancing accessibility for all in their national parks. The symposium also delivered panel discussions and debate on South Africa’s accessibility as a tourist destination. This panel discussion emphasised the need for more work to be done to make South Africa more accessible from a practical and policy point of view.
NATIONAL DEPARTMENT OF TOURISM:
UPDATE: NATIONAL TOURISM CAREER EXPO MEDIA LAUNCH
On Thursday 08 September, we participated in a media launch of the National Tourism Career Expo (NTCE). The NTCE is a collaboration of three partners, namely the NDT, CATHSSETA and DESTEA in the Free State Province. It is intended to provide an interactive platform of industry role players, curricula experts, educators, learners and students. The expo is also designed to bridge the information gap amongst the stakeholders identified herewith. The aim of the media launch was to launch the 2016 Career Expo, which will be held in Bloemfontein this coming October. The Deputy Minister of Tourism, Ms Tokozile Xasa, addressed attendees and urged the private sector to support and participate in the NTCE. In this regard, we will be sending members an invite in due course detailing how you can participate in the NTCE.
INVITATION: WOMEN IN TOURISM CONFERENCE: 05 – 06 OCTOBER 2016
The Department of Tourism in partnership with City of Tshwane cordially invites all the female role players in our industry to attend the Annual Women in Tourism Conference on 05 – 06 October at the Sheraton Hotel, Pretoria. Click Here to view the formal invite and to get more information.
NDT 2015/16 ANNUAL REPORT
Click Here to download the NDT Annual Report for 2015/16.
SOUTH AFRICAN TOURISM:
SA TOURISM 2015/16 ANNUAL REPORT RELEASED
Click Here to download the SAT Annual Report for 2015/16
SAFETY AND SECURITY SECTION:
TOURISM SAFETY INITIATIVE FORUM MEETING
On 14 September we met with representatives from the Gauteng Tourism Authority, SA Tourism and NDT to reactivate the TSI forum meeting and to update members on developments on the Tsi project. It was agreed that there is a need for alignment on tourism safety and security projects and programmes been rolled out by respective forum members. Furthermore, the members agreed to draw TORs to govern the forum and also articulate responsibilities of each of the members. The meeting also agreed to discuss key areas of partnership to leverage on the available resources from the members to advance the Tsi at the next forum meeting.
FRAUD ALERT FOR ALL ACCOMMODATION ESTABLISHMENTS
Please be on the lookout for a suspect by the name of Quinton Maxwell. His modus operandi is that he makes a reservation at an accommodation establishment and then requests an invoice for him to make an EFT payment. He then sends an EFT proof of payment from Investec bank, which never clears and makes the excuse that there could be an issue or problem with the bank itself. A contact at Rand Merchant Bank has since confirmed that the proof of payment used is fraudulent. He was allegedly spotted in the Sandton CBD on Thursday 15 September. A case has been opened at SAPS.
17th ANNUAL CITES CONFERENCE, JOHANNESBURG, 24 SEPTEMBER 2016
The 17th Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES), will be hosted at the Sandton Convention Centre in Johannesburg on 24 September to 5 October 2016. CITES remains one of the world’s most powerful platforms for biodiversity conservation through the regulation of trade in wild fauna and flora. Because the trade in wild animals and plants crosses borders between countries, the effort to regulate it requires international cooperation to safeguard certain species from over-exploitation. This year’s conference is going to be the largest and one of the most critical meetings in the 43-year history of the Convention. It will have a record number of agenda items and participants, and over 60 proposals for the amendment of the CITES Appendices. Click Here to register if you wish to take part or know more.
FINDERS KEEPERS ENTERS THE FREE STATE PROVINCE THIS TOURISM MONTH
We have entered into the last stage of the 2016 TOMSA Finders Keepers competition. The previous Sunday’s edition of the Sunday Times newspaper showcased the enchanting Free State province – hosts of World Tourism Day 2016. We would again like to thank Bidvest Car Rental, the Metcourt at the Frontier Inn and Casino, the Black Mountain Leisure & Conference Hotel in Thaba Nchu, and Windmill Lodge in Bloemfontein for sponsoring prizes and providing the team with accommodation during their trip in the province. In line with celebrating Tourism and Heritage month, the final Finders Keepers double page-spread published this past weekend in the Sunday Times focussed on discovering the best of cultural tourist icons and attractions around South Africa. Entries for the grand prize also came to a close this past weekend. We can now reveal that the winner of the R1 million grand prize will be announced on 02 October 2016. Look out for your invitation to attend the special event.
LOCAL AND INTERNATIONAL INDUSTRY NEWS: QUICK LINKS
- South African Airways to receive a further guarantee from Treasury
- How Airbnb and hotels can co-exist
- Cyber fraud is soaring in local tourism
- 7 hotels, 3 brands: Marriott announces new China properties
THE WEEK AHEAD: EVENTS AND DATES TO NOTE AND/ OR DIARISE:
- 19 September Tactical board sub committee meeting, via Telecom
- 20 September Tourism BEE Charter Council Meeting at the NDT Offices
- 21 September Immigrations Advisory Board Meeting at the DHA Offices
- 21 September Membership Meeting with PHASA at PHASA Offices
- 24 – 27 September World Routes Conference, Chengdu, China
- 26 September Tourism Month Lecture, CUT, Bloemfontein
- 27 September World Tourism Day celebration, Parys, Free State Province
- 24 September – 5 October CITES at Sandton Convention Centre, Johannesburg
We trust that the updates we provide on our activities and the information we share from within and outside the industry is useful in your businesses. As always, your feedback is highly appreciated.
Ms. Mmatšatši Ramawela
CHIEF EXECUTIVE OFFICER