News Articles

It`s time to take tourism seriously - part 2

Source: Tourism Update, 01/01/1970

South Africa is often near the top on any rankings of most beautiful countries in the world, says Saunders. The country is also ‘underweight’ in many areas of tourism compared with similar nations, and, as a destination, Saunders says South Africa has undisputed competitive advantages. All this means that there is huge potential for growth. But how does that potential become real? “The biggest growth market opportunities for us are India and China; they are the biggest and fastest growing outbound markets, and are also key markets on the rest of the continent,” says Saunders. “The first really easy low-hanging fruit is to fast track a world- class online eVisa system. It must handle capacity, be easy to use, documentation requirements must not be onerous and the turn- around time should be quick,” she says, adding that AI algorithms, and not human review, should be used for most visa issuance. “And it must, as soon as possible, have interfaces in multiple languages, especially Mandarin.” Saunders points out that if other low-income countries, such as Ethiopia and Vietnam, can manage an eVisa system like this, South Africa should be able to as well. “And while we do that, another quick and immediate win is to recognise other visas like USA, Schengen, Australia, and the UK, the way many other countries do,” she says. “This will open up destination South Africa for many Indian, Chinese, Nigerian, and other visa-requiring markets overnight.” Saunders says South Africa also needs a review of visa-requiring countries, taking particular account of those with tourism potential, and to drop in its entirety the reciprocity principle. In July, the Department of Home Offices decided to scrap visa requirements for various countries, including New Zealand. Aaron Motsoaledi, Minister of Home Affairs, announced the changes at the 2019 Budget Vote. Motsoaledi also announced that Home Affairs would increase the number of staff working for the department by two-and-a-half times to process visas in both India and China. But as Saunders points out, the commitment was made to up the processing capacity “this financial year”, which could mean only by the end of March 2020. www.samigration.com


Search

  •    SA`S NEW travel rules prevented our minor children from attending a family funeral. My wife and children were on holiday in Florence, Italy, and I had returned early to our home in Singapore when we received the tragic news that our three-year-old niece had passed away. We wanted to return to SA immediately, in time for the funeral last Friday.... Read more...
  •    Calls for investigation into outsourced immigration services after The Independent revealed Home Office profits on UK visas surged by millions of pounds a week under private firm accused of exploiting applicants... Read more...
  •    Chantel* was only 15 years old when she hopped the Eswatini-South African border in early 2007. She says she lived her whole life in an orphanage in Manzini, never knew her biological parents and never saw her birth certificate... Read more...
  •    We, as South Africans, always complain about government service, however, I am extremely excited to report that my son arrived at Home Affairs on Wednesday morning on July 31 with an expectation of long queues, disinterested staff and very little help.... Read more...
  •    President Cyril Ramaphosa has signed into law the controversial National Credit Amendment Bill which is geared to provide relief to over-indebted consumers... Read more...
  •    South Africa seeks skilled individuals to live and work in SA.... Read more...
  •    The International Monetary Fund’s (IMF) senior resident representative in South Africa Montfort Mlachila has confirmed that South Africa has not requested an IMF loan and he added that, “We will not see a balance of payments (support programme) for South Africa.”... Read more...
  •    Herewith find a clear understanding of this often misunderstood section of the Act . When one looks at specifically the definition of a relationship as defined in the Act and The Regulations which is quoted below we wish to draw your attention to specifically to point 3 (2) ( a) (i) and (ii) which must be read very carefully and we highlight and bold the relevant sections and in particular wish to point out all the Act requires is that evidence of the relationship is for 2 years... Read more...
  •    The US government has announced that an increase in the investment threshold for foreigners to access a US Green Card via the Immigrant Investor EB-5 Programme will come into effect from November 21, 2019, when the amount will increase from $500 000 (about R7.5m) to $900 000 (about R13.5m).... Read more...
  •    CAPE TOWN, - Two immigration officials and an alleged `middleman` are in police custody after being arrested this week in connection with a bribery scheme, the Directorate for Priority Crime Investigation (Hawks) said on Wednesday.... Read more...

Get the latest Immigration News