Tourism is not frivolous - Gillis

2013-02-27 16:51
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Cape Town - Tourism should not be a poor cousin to education and health, a major hotel chain said in reaction to the 2013 national Budget unveiled on Wednesday.

The tourism industry is a major force in job creation and skills devolution, Protea Hospitality Group CEO Arthur Gillis said.

"[It] should not be seen as a frivolous or poor cousin to the weightier ministries."

"Tourism is one of the fastest growing industries in South Africa and contributes more than eight percent of the country's gross domestic product."

Gillis said last year the department of tourism's budget allocation grew by 2.07 percent and this year's allocation was "not much greater".

He welcomed Gordhan's announcement that new rules would soon be tabled to simplify the time and cost involved in doing business across Africa.

"As a company we are planning to double our hotel representation in Africa within the next five years, so anything to simplify that process cannot happen soon enough."

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