Citizen Reporter
2 minute read
19 Mar 2020
12:21 pm

KZN tourism already feeling negative impact of Covid-19 outbreak

Citizen Reporter

The MEC says the KZN Tourism Authority and KZN Convention Bureau have already postponed international events with a combined value of R32m.

KZN MEC for Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs (Cogta) Nomusa Dube-Ncube

KwaZulu-Natal MEC for Economic Development, Tourism and Environmental Affairs Nomusa Dube-Ncube has said the province’s economy, “especially on the tourism front”, is already feeling the negative impact brought on by the viral outbreak of Covid-19.

The MEC said amid the outbreak, her department continued to gather economic data and continues to monitor economic trends.

“There are countries that have experienced a significant drop in revenue as a result of falling economic activity.

“Many countries are already facing lower export revenues due to a decline in commodity prices and falling tourism.

“This province is already feeling the negative impact of the virus, especially on the tourism front. Our entities, KZN Tourism Authority and KZN Convention Bureau have already postponed international events, which have a combined value of R32 million. A consolidated list and costs associated with the postponement of many other events will be made public,” Dube-Ncube said.

The MEC indicated that a research-driven recovery plan driven by research steered by sound economic planning and extensive consultation is currently being worked on by her department.

“We are exploring the possibilities of putting together stimulus packages to intervene in sectors of the economy that have been hardest hit by the outbreak. These will be announced once finalised,” Dube-Ncube said.

Meanwhile, she applauded “big business” for being active in efforts to curb the spread of the coronavirus.

This after the Edison Power Group owned by entrepreneur Vivian Reddy donated R2.5 million worth of sanitary towels and diapers.

“Following the outbreak of the coronavirus, I wish to express my appreciation to the captains of industry for their timely intervention,” Dube-Ncube said.

She said she would on Thursday join the premier of KwaZulu-Natal, Sihle Zikalala, during a handover of 500,000 sanitary towels and diapers worth R2.5 million.

“We thank Edison Power Group for demonstrating patriotism and showing a deep love for the people of this province.

“Undoubtedly, this much-needed donation will assist in strengthening the fight against this outbreak which has crippled economies of various countries,” Dube-Ncube said.

The MEC said an announcement would be made on the details of public entities that would receive donations from captains of industry.

“Many have indicated their intention to use their corporate social investment initiatives to augment the government’s fight against the outbreak of the coronavirus.”

(Compiled by Makhosandile Zulu)

For more news your way, download The Citizen’s app for iOS and Android.