THE THREE-DAY Meetings Africa gathering comes to an end at the Sandton Convention Center.
The gathering was graced by the former minister of Tourism Toko Xasa, who encouraged guests and visitors that “Let’s keep Nelson Mandela’s spirit alive in 2018.”
She also quoted President Cyril Ramaphosa, who during his State of the Nation Address said, “we have the most beautiful country in the world and the most hospitable people. We also have the infrastructure, the expertise and the unparalleled natural assets to elevate an ordinary event into an extraordinary one.”
Xasa said, there’s a need for the business events industry to empower new entrants and embrace partnership in order to play a leading role in advancing Africa together.
Botswana Tourism Organization also took advantage of the gathering by introducing new products offerings to the African market.
Lesedi Thema, Consulate from Botswana pointed out that Botswana is primed to be the leading player within the conservation and eco-tourism.
BOT outlined its marketing strategy to penetrate the market through eventing; formalising MOU with SA; and collaborating with UNWTO on how to improve standards of tourist destinations, amongst others.
Asked what were some of the challenges BOT faces: tourists spending less time in Botswana and losing out on lack of direct flights to the country, and tight regulations on filming and images that must be consented by law makers, amongst others.
Buoyant Sisa Ntshona-CE SAT boss says he’s looking forward working with the returning minister of Tourism Derek Hanekom and the business tourism sector, amongst others.
Business events contribute over R115bn into the South African economy.
Meanwhile, Gauteng province will host the Meetings Africa until 2022.