The Department of Tourism and South African Tourism will, for the first time, host Africa’s Travel and Tourism Summit from 19-21 September 2021.The Department of Tourism together with South African Tourism (SA Tourism) has announced that Africa’s Travel and Tourism Summit will take place from 19-21 September 2021 to coincide with Tourism Month in South Africa. Following a difficult period for the tourism industry, the Summit, according to a media release received by theplanner.guru, “aims to be a catalyst for engagement on the current state of tourism on the African continent.” It will achieve this by holding interactive sessions that engage the tourism sector and encourage the sharing of insights and ideas. It will also explore areas of collaboration to drive recovery. Africa’s Travel and Tourism Summit will attract delegates from Africa’s tourism community, Ministers of Tourism, industry associations and boards, in addition to several other key partners and roleplayers across the tourism value chain. Some of the key areas of focus at the Summit will include health and safety protocols currently in place, aviation, innovation, technology and the positioning of tourism across the continent post the Covid-19 pandemic. “The Covid-19 pandemic may have dealt tourism, both business and leisure tourism, a heavy blow, but we are now in the recovery phase, and a summit of this nature is critical in ensuring that we are aligned as a continent whilst reigniting the tourism industry,” noted SA Tourism’s Acting CEO, Sthembiso Dlamini, emphasising the importance of working towards an inclusive recovery.
Walking the talkThe Summit will run as a hybrid event that delegates can attend virtually, or attend physically at participating venues across South Africa, or one of three designated locations in the rest of Africa, subject to Covid-19 health and safety protocols and regulations. “We have opted for the hybrid format in order for us, as a continent, to lead the way in demonstrating how tourism can be enjoyed safely whilst adhering to health protocols. It is important that we are diligent in reigniting the sector, as it contributes significantly to the African economy,” noted Sthembiso, highlighting that Africa’s Travel and Tourism Summit will be a thinktank for the continent, serving as a platform for Africa’s tourism leaders to “create solutions for Africa and contribute to global solutions for the industry.”
Meetings Africa and Africa’s Travel Indaba’s 2021 instalments, which take place each year in February and May, were unable to run as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic.“In the absence of Africa’s Travel Indaba in 2020 and 2021, Africa’s Travel and Tourism Summit is an innovative initiative for promoting intra-Africa tourism and also for sharing insights into the ‘state of readiness’ for South Africa and the rest of Africa to welcome the world during and post-Covid-19 pandemic,” says Kwakye Donkor, CEO of Africa Tourism Partners. “I commend South African Tourism and the South African National Convention Bureau, for once again, showing commitment and leadership in tourism promotion across the continent. It will be so great to meet traditional and emerging trade partners again during the Summit. Well done to Team South Africa Tourism! We look forward to a very fruitful Summit,” concluded Kwakye.