Africa’s tourism sector eager for recovery – CAJ News Africa
of NJABULO BUTHELEZI in Durban
DURBAN, (ACJ News) – An industry executive urged the tourism industry and governments to work together to resuscitate the industry from the impact of the coronavirus.
Tourism has arguably been the sector most affected by the pandemic since its onset at the end of 2019 and spread to Africa early last year.
Cuthbert Ncube, president of the African Tourism Board, urged stakeholders to work together to help the continent’s tourism recover.
“We have to start breaking down the barriers that separated us,” he said in Durban at the recently concluded Intra-African Trade Fair (IATF) 2021.
Ncube said that over the past two and a half years, the continent has suffered the worst negative impact on its tourism sector.
“It has crippled our tourism economies,” said the executive.
The spread of COVID-19 has prompted countries to close their borders and airspaces.
During the resulting closures, hotels and restaurants in most countries were banned from providing accommodation or food services.
The COVID-19 pandemic and the recovery has been a common theme at the IATF Investment Forum.
Dr Acha Leke, senior partner and chairman of McKinsey & Company: Africa, said there was general optimism among investors about Africa.
He said that if 150 million jobs had not been lost as feared before, 30 million have been lost.
“So in general we have not been as affected as we feared by the crisis, which on the one hand makes it more exciting for investors to come and continue to invest in these markets,” Leke said.
– CAJ News