South Africa bolsters presence in Middle East
by SAVIOUS KWINIKA
JOHANNESBURG – SOUTH African Tourism is boosting its marketing efforts in the Middle East market, as global travel again picks momentum.
The organisation is making the most of the Arabian Travel Market (ATM), taking place in Dubai from May 9-12.
It is a leading international trade show which brings together global destinations to showcase their tourism offerings to this market.
This year, ten South African products and experiences will be showcasing experiences geared towards travelers from the Middle East.
In addition, SA Tourism will be providing nine small, medium and micro enterprises (SMMEs) the opportunity to showcase at the ATM.
This is part of the organisation’s efforts to provide market access to upcoming tourism businesses.
This is to aid in the recovery of the sector and to ensure inclusion in the industry.
This will be the sixth time that SA Tourism will participate at the ATM, which for the first time now forms part of the organisation’s nine strategic platforms due to the importance of the Middle Eastern market.
Lindiwe Sisulu, Minister of Tourism, will lead a delegation traveling to the ATM.
“It is really important for us to intensify our efforts in promoting our beautiful country on global platforms again as we have had limited opportunities to do so in the two last years,” she said.
“Our tourism sector’s recovery depends on this and of course on us working collaboratively to really show the full might of our tourism potential. I am looking forward to the engagements at Arabian Travel Market,” said Sisulu.
Themba Khumalo, SA Tourism Acting Chief Executive Officer, echoed the minister’s sentiments.
“As our tourism sector recovers, we want to once again assure travellers from the Middle East that South Africa as a destination caters for them and is ready to welcome them onto our shores,” Khumalo said.
He added, “South Africa is well positioned to cater for the needs of the Muslim traveler seeking the Halaal traveling experience.”
The Middle East forms one of South Africa’s key source markets.
Although travel during the pandemic slowed down, travelers from this market are once again returning to South Africa.
During January and February 2022, travel from the Middle East increased by 327 percent compared to the same period in 2021.
– CAJ News