South African Embassy and South African Tourism welcome and host ITB exhibitors
Berlin, 7 March 2017. While Tourism Minister Derek Hanekom, Minister Plenipotentiary Advocate MA Cassimjee, Consul General George Motlatjo Monyemangene attended the official opening of the World’s Leading Travel Trade Show with 10,000 exhibitors from 180 countries, in the presence of H.E. Lieutenant General Dr Seretse Ian Khama, president of the official partner country Botswana, Counsellor Feziwe Madikizela welcomed Siza Ntshona, Chief Executive Officer of South African Tourism (SAT), Theresa Bay-Müller, Country Manager South African Tourism Germany, as well as 52 South African exhibitors to the Embassy of the Republic of South Africa in Berlin. It was a good moment to reflect on the record year 2016 with over ten million visitors arriving in South Africa (12.8% increase) and the ambitious goal of the revised marketing strategy to attract five million more domestic and international visitors in five years.
The CEO of the destination marketing agency SAT, Siza Ntshona, is convinced that tourism can double its present contribution to the South African Gross National Product (9.4%). Tourism is one of the driving forces of the South African economy and social transformation. The country is absolutely unique in the world and thus contains a huge potential. Integrative growth and transformation, which include the majority of the population and create new jobs, are essential, he states.
On a short-term basis the “Five in Five” strategy is to strengthen partnerships between the private and public sector to support the local tourism industry. Ntshona and further senior managers of SAT have closely co-operated with the South African trade press medium Tourism Update since the end of 2016. Part of the partnership are regular trade webinars. TIP, the Tourism Incentive Program of the National Department of Tourism, is to boost the development and growth of small and medium-sized enterprises (SMMEs).
The new global marketing campaign „WOW in every moment,“ which will start in Germany in April, shows travellers the real South Africa, unfiltered, authentic and true-to-life. “Begin your safari now,” may it be a culture safari on the tracks of contemporary art, a surfing or a wine safari, South Africa has more to offer than just wild animals and presents a great experience for every taste.
For 2017 and 2018, Theresa Bay-Müller, Country Manager SAT Germany, relies on personal talks with tourists and trade agents „It is the people of our country who can bring South Africa’s spirit best across. South Africa, this means passion, moving encounters and precious memories, that are best talked about by South Africans themselves and those, whose hearts have already been won by our beautiful country,“ says Bay-Müller.