from FUTHI MBHELE in Durban
DURBAN – TOURISM KwaZulu-Natal (TKZN) has opened applications for small, medium and micro tourism enterprises (SMMEs) to apply for capacity business support.
The process is open to the accommodation, hospitality, professional catering, attractions as well as travel and related services.
This is under the Enterprise Development Programme, which the province is reintroducing to help operators overcome the challenges that continue to hinder the transformation of the tourism sector.
“By transforming and growing the sector jobs will be created,” said Siboniso Duma KZN Member of the Executive Committee (MEC) for Economic Development, Tourism and Environmental Affairs.
“The rate of transformation in the tourism sector remains painfully slow, yet it is critical for the success of the tourism sector. Without transformation the growth and development of the industry is not guaranteed,” Duma said.
According to TKZN, the challenges in transforming the sector include lack of management skills, limited access to finance and difficult economic circumstances.
Furthermore, new business owners are often unaware of the opportunities that exist in their environment while the cost and difficulty of accessing and engaging with international travel buyers is a major barrier to unlocking opportunities.
Applications for the TKZN Enterprise Development Programme close on October 7.
“This is a fantastic opportunity for tourism enterprises to get professional assistance to ensure they not only survive the tough times but are able to thrive and flourish in better times,” Duma said.
TKZN is responsible for the development, promotion, and marketing of tourism into and within the province, both domestically and internationally.
– CAJ News