Transformation in the tourism industry has, however, been slow, and it is thus that initiatives other than the BEE Tourism Charter and Scorecard have been launched. In 2009 in Soweto (situated on the south western outskirts of Johannesburg), the Empowerment Zone was established to support and grow local businesses, including tourism enterprises. The aim of the initiative is to create sustainable economic development mainly through establishing and strengthening links with existent businesses. The Empowerment Zone orientates itself towards small, medium and micro enterprises (SMMEs).
Cape Town is one of South Africa’s premier tourist destinations and Trip Advisor, a leading international authority on matters of travel, recently honoured Cape Town with the title of Best Tourist Destination of 2011. Mariёtte du Toit-Helmbold, CEO of Cape Town Tourism, has pointed the way forward for the city’s tourist branding, and would like to see Cape Town as an exciting, challenging, and new city. Cape Town hosts some of South Africa’s most dramatic and beautiful scenery (Table Mountain has been included in the list of the new seven wonders of the world), the country’s internationally acclaimed wine-routes, and property values in the mother city reflect the fact that real estate in Cape Town is some of the most sought after in the world. Additionally, the Mother City (Cape Town’s well known alias) has also been identified as the 2014 World Design Capital – a title which can be seen to reflect the city’s standard of native talent. Cape Town Tourism has pledged itself to the BEE Tourism Charter (adopted in May 2005, and gazetted in May 2009), and as such, is committed to make local tourism globally competitive and to include South Africans of colour in the growing industry.
Another initiative implemented to further the progress of transformation in the tourism industry can be found in KwaZulu Natal. The province’s MEC for Economic Development and Tourism has outlined three focus areas to enable transformation: the establishment of a tourism business forum, aimed at bringing together the private sector and government; a commitment from tourism departments and agencies to support transformation at enterprise level; and a commitment from tourism departments and agencies to promote black ownership in key tourism growth sectors.
Other areas growing in tourism numbers, like the Eastern Cape, are similarly trying to open up the industry to previously disadvantaged people. If you are thinking of growing a business in this beautiful area of the country, perhaps consider checking out the property for sale in Port Elizabeth or the property for sale in East London. The two latter cities are equipped with sea ports and air ports and are therefore very accessible to tourists.