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Kubayi-Ngubane: R200m set aside for tourism sector has been depleted

Of the over 7,000 companies that applied for relief, only 4,000 of them were given grant,s leaving over 3,000 not getting a cent.

Minister of Tourism Mmamoloko Kubayi-Ngubane at an inter-ministerial briefing on 24 March 2020 detailing how government will respond ahead of and during the 21-day lockdown announced by President Cyril Ramaphosa. Picture: Kayleen Morgan/EWN.

JOHANNESBURG - Tourism Minister Mmamoloko Kubayi-Ngubane said the R200 million set aside for the tourism sector had been depleted.

Of the over 7,000 companies that applied for relief, only 4,000 of them were given grants, leaving over 3,000 not getting a cent.

Kubayi-Ngubane said they're working on finding other ways to assist.

The minister also announced that the curfew had been extended from 9 pm to 10 pm.

Intra-province travel for leisure is also allowed.

In 2018, the South African tourism industry contributed close to R500 billion to the country’s GDP.

A pale comparison to the R200 million it received from government to address the COVID-19 impact.

Kubayi-Ngubane said they’re looking at new ways to assist companies which didn't receive any relief.

“We welcome the decision by the Minister of Finance to review and change the qualifying criteria for the R200 million COVID-19 guarantee scheme so that more businesses can gain access to the funds. We encourage businesses within our sector to explore this opportunity. We welcome the announcement by Minister Nxesi for the extension of the temporary employer-employee relief scheme.”

Kubayi-Ngubane said they’re working on a recovery plan for the sector but was vague on the details of the plan to revive tourism post-COVID-19.

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