The other side of the ‘tourism coin’

The 2015 Statistics South Africa report on tourism1 concentrates on information about travellers, e.g. their numbers and origins, but does not provide any information about tourism and hospitality (T&H) enterprises in South Africa, e.g. their numbers or locations. Neither do the 2015/16 Annual Report of the Department of Tourism2 and the 2016 Report of the World Tourism Organization3 provide such information. Something is lacking in the tourism scene of South Africa.

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Is the promotion of Black Businesses done by the blind?

Government is pursuing numerous strategies to promote black owned businesses, e.g.:

  • The 80 Black Industrialists’ programme;
  • The Gazelles Programme (fast growing small enterprises that should increase their turnover and growth much faster than the market average);
  • The Cooperative Incentive Scheme;
  • Preferential procurement programmes;
  • BBBEE-measures effectively forcing large and medium-sized companies to subcontract to black owned businesses;
  • Sector Charters;
  • Grants and SEFA loans;
  • Land Reform and Restitution;
  • The Free State Provincial Grants Scheme and numerous other provincial initiatives,

and the list goes on and on… Continue reading “Is the promotion of Black Businesses done by the blind?”

Zipf’s law and South African towns

An important question has exercised the minds of many economist over time: why are there differences in the sizes of different towns? For instance, why are all towns in a region not of equal size? The answer has to do with power laws.

There is no Hobbesian significance in the word ‘power’ – it is just a mathematical term. If the value of some quantity q depends on the value of another quantity x according to a power-law relationship, this means that each time x is doubled, y increases by some constant factor (Ball, 2005).

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Challenges in assessing the potential impacts of shale gas production on tourism in the Karoo

Shale-Gas-SA-cover-A4_FINAL-722x1024Tourism is not a clearly defined industry in the International Standard Industrial Classification of all Economic Activities (ISIC). The key factor in the Tourism Satellite Account for South Africa is to relate purchases by tourists to the total supply of these goods and services. Quantification of tourism enterprise numbers does not form part of the national assessments; yet it was necessary to know how many tourism-related enterprises could be impacted by shale gas production in the study area of the Karoo.

So how did we endeavour to solve this problem?
Continue reading “Challenges in assessing the potential impacts of shale gas production on tourism in the Karoo”