Tourism is a vital part of the South African economy, with the latest figures showing that around 3.5-million tourists visited our shores in August 2017, according to Statistics SA. In a bid to expand the industry, the Northern Cape has launched a new Tourism Business Incubator, aiming to help develop local small, medium and micro-sized enterprises (SMMEs).
The Northern Cape has a wide variety of popular attractions, from Kimberley’s famous Big Hole and the large natural spring known as the Eye of Kuruman to the spectacular Namaqualand spring wildflower season. The province’s starkly beautiful natural habitats are ideal for outdoor activities and action-packed adventures.
“The Northern Cape has a thriving tourism economy, and it is to this end that we have elected to launch our fourth Tourism Business Incubator in this province to ensure that the benefits of tourism are enjoyed by all,” said Deputy Minister of Tourism Elizabeth Thabethe.
The incubators are part of the government’s Tourism Enterprise Development Programme to ensure sustainable, inclusive growth and development of the sector, and the new initiative, based in Mier, is set to support around 50 SMMEs in and around the Northern Cape.
Participants can look forward to mentorship, in-depth needs analysis and coaching to help their companies grow and thrive.
The tourism sector relies on smaller businesses, as well as larger organisations, to stimulate economic growth. Apart from creating opportunities for tourism specialists, the Northern Cape also wants to open up the industry to include other operators.
The aim is for the incubator to enable the sharing of knowledge and experience, creating a ripple effect to the benefit of the economy of the entire province.
For more information on the Tourism Enterprise Development and Support Programme, visit www.tourism.gov.za.