Cape Town - The City of Cape Town has written to the newly appointed Minister of Tourism, Lindiwe Sisulu, to highlight critical areas within the portfolio that needed immediate action.
The City highlighted the campaign to enact a remote worker visa saying Cape Town was already a highly favoured location for “digital nomads”.
Economic Opportunities and Asset Management Mayco member James Vos said enabling the visa with specific parameters would simply require the national government to make provisions in the Immigration Act for a period longer than three months.
Vos said other countries have had great success with that type of visa and it would give South Africa greater appeal to a far broader category of tourist.
He said another issue would be the urgency required to work on removing South Africa from the UK’s so-called “red list”.
Vos said that was a campaign supported by among others, the Southern Africa Tourism Services Association and the City’s Destination Marketing Partner, Cape Town Tourism.
"The UK is our biggest tourist source market and so their decision to keep South Africa on this red list, which dissuades travellers from going to listed countries because of its very high quarantine costs, has resulted in us losing out on a large number of British travellers," said Vos.
Cape Town Tourism chief executive Enver Duminy said the minister should work on getting South Africa off the UK red list (the country’s biggest source market) by lobbying UK to government to government agreement.
Tourism Department spokesperson Blessing Manale said they could not comment on intergovernmental correspondence before it had been formally acknowledged and processed “through the established liaison protocol”.
Manale said Sisulu has over the past few days received numerous messages of congratulations, support and offers of assistance and advice on her new role.
"She is interacting with various stakeholders in the public, private, industry associations and communities in the sector, to continue to listen and appreciate the collective efforts in finding innovative mechanisms to reboot the sector," he said.