Markets & Investment News South Africa

Gauteng invests in business tourism

The Gauteng Tourism Authority (GTA) plans to further strengthen its position as South Africa’s premier business tourism destination. Cawe Mahlati, chief executive officer of the GTA says increasing both local and international business tourism to Gauteng is one of the organisation’s strategic priorities. “We believe Gauteng is uniquely positioned as South Africa’s home of BusinessUnusual, providing the ideal getaway and allowing for innovative thinking.”

BusinessUnusual is a concept developed by South African Tourism, aimed at significantly growing business tourism so that South Africa can differentiate itself as a global meetings destination. This year, South African Tourism and the local chapter of Society of Incentive & Travel Executives (SITE) have secured the Annual SITE Board Summit to be held during Meetings Africa 2007.

Mahlati says Gauteng, as South Africa’s economic hub, has a highly professional and advanced meetings, incentive, conferences and exhibitions sector. “It boasts over 430 conference facilities and hosts an average of 13 000 events annually. More than 40 international airlines link the province to major centres worldwide.”

According to GTA research Gauteng achieved a phenomenal growth of nearly 30 percent in total Foreign Direct Spend through tourism from R13 billion to R16.6 billion in 2005. This is expected to increase to over R35 billion in 2010.

“By investing in initiatives such as Meetings Africa, I believe we will be instrumental in realising the business tourism potential of Gauteng,” says Mahlati. “Being home to Meetings Africa makes perfect sense for us.”

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