Nigeria Minister visits SA to boost tourism relations

2012-08-31 11:45
Johannesburg - Nigeria and South Africa will re-visit the ‘Cooperation in the field of Tourism Agreement' signed in 2008 when the two countries' Tourism Ministers and other officials meet in Pretoria this week.

The meeting comes after an invitation from South Africa's Tourism Minister, Mr. Marthinus Van Schalkwyk, to his Nigerian counterpart, Chief Edem Duke, for an official four-day visit to South Africa, which starts on 30 August 2012.

The tourism agreement between South Africa and Nigeria covers interactions between tourism and travel trade officials; the exchange of tourism research and statistics and human resource development.

It also includes investment, exchange programmes, joint marketing, the establishment of a joint commission, entry formalities and environmental matters between the two countries. 

"It is our sincere aim to continue to forge partnerships and working relationships between Nigeria and South Africa to further boost and grow our tourism sectors to provide employment opportunities, as well as to contribute a significant percentage to the economies of our dear nations," said Minister Duke.

"Both Nigeria and South Africa have seen a tremendous partnership and significant engagements in areas such as telecommunications, media, tourism and aviation. This has led to more than US$3 billion in trade volume between South Africa and Nigeria. And there is further rich potential for both countries not only to maintain this mutual and symbiotic relationship, but to up the ante too," Minister Duke added.

"South Africa's relationship with Nigeria is one of deep friendship, a strong partnership and a united determination to grow tourist arrivals not only to the two destinations, but to the entire African region," Minster Van Schalkwyk said, ahead of the arrival of his Nigerian counterpart.

"Nigeria is a major growth market for our destination. We saw monumental tourist arrivals growth of 37.5% from Nigeria in 2011 and arrivals from Nigeria grew a further 28.7% in the first four months of this year," Minister Van Schalkwyk added.

During his trip to South Africa from 30 August to 2 September 2012, the Nigerian Tourism Minister will join Minister van Schalkwyk at the launch of South Africa's Tourism Month. Tourism Month is celebrated annually in South Africa every September and will be officially launched this year at the Getaway Show on 31 August 2012 in Johannesburg.

This year's Tourism Month agenda will focus intensely on encouraging South Africans to travel their own country and to get a better understanding of the affordable and exciting leisure travel attractions available to them on their own doorstep.

The Getaway show is organised by South Africa's national travel and outdoor magazine, Getaway, whose editorial content gives readers ideas on where to go in South Africa, what to do and what to see in South Africa and the rest of Southern Africa. 

As part of his itinerary, the Nigerian Tourism Minister and his delegation will also visit Cape Town, where they will be treated to a host of leisure activities, including a visit to the famous Table Mountain, one of the new Seven Wonders of Nature, as well as a tour of the city and the winelands.

Both Ministers will also feature on SABC 2's ‘Morning Live', a highly- rated breakfast TV show on state-owned SABC television and thereafter on its sister radio station, Metro FM. 
Read more on:    travel south africa
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