East London hosts 4th Annual National Tourism Career Expo
The 4th Annual National Tourism Career Expo (NTCE) got off to a good start at the International Conference Centre (ICC) in East London, with the Acting Mayor of Bisho Metropolitan Municipality Cllr Nazo declaring the expo opened. Councillor Nazo conveyed a message of gratitude to the tripartite partnership; National Department of Tourism (NDT), the Eastern Cape Economic Development, and Culture, Arts, Tourism, Hospitality, Sport, Sector Education and Training Authority (CATHSSETA) for choosing Buffalo City for hosting the NTCE. “The Eastern Cape is one of the provinces that rely on tourism to grow the economy. Hosting of the NTCE will provide learners with skills development which is one of the government priorities, and Buffalo city identified the event as one of the measures to growing the market share”, said the Councillor.
Hospitality Chamber Chairperson, Mr Caleb Mabaso conveyed a message of support for the hosting of the NTCE. He said the industry has been yearning for an opportunity to interact with learners on tourism related matters. “We hope that the interaction will be a turning point in the choice of careers of the learners attending the NTCE”.
Further stating that the industry is growing; there are a lot of opportunities for those who choose to be part of the industry. This forum will expose you to a number of opportunities in the sector. The industry is waiting to welcome you and we hope you are going to make the right decision.
Affectionately known as Noluntu on the soapy Generations, Zenande Mfenyane inspired the learners by sharing her success stories about her road to success. “I come from the humble beginnings in Kagiso, and in Queenstown that’s why my isiXhosa is so good”. She encouraged the learners to do introspection and decide what career they need to pursue, and to never listen to the doomsayers. An opportunity was given to the learners to pose questions to Zenande.
“Many of you are not aware that for the past week, the province has been buzzing with celebration, thanks to the NDT”, these were the remarks by the MEC for Economic Development, Environmental Affairs, and Tourism Mr Mcebisi Jonas, in the introduction of the key note speaker. He expressed gratitude in the NDT for demonstrating confidence in our province and our facilities.
In her key note address, Deputy Minister of Tourism Tokozile Xasa commended all provinces for their Tourism Month activities, as this is an opportunity to encourage South Africans to travel their own country. “The NTCE is a convergence of the sector to share on one of the contributors to job creation. In the first NTCE in KZN, more than 17 000 people attended, and the event has since registered growth. It is a platform for our learners to career opportunities. As the Department, we want to instil tourism as a fiercely competitive market, requiring skills, talent, and enterprise and a government that backs South Africa. During the last five years, South Africa has outpaced the growth of all competitor locations in the leisure arrivals category. Foreign direct spend in rand terms has grown faster than arrivals, with an 11% per annum growth. For too long, tourism has Tourism has a significant economic potential to grow the economy of any country, it is relevant, and is attracting more youth on a regular basis. Part of what this expo seeks to achieve is to find mechanisms to ensure that the youth is equipped to make informed career paths. Choose Tourism as a career, it is a right thing to do”, she concluded.
“This expo presents a great opportunity for the learners to be exposed to the industry and the destination,” concluded Eastern Cape Parks and Tourism Agency Executive Director, Eddie Marafane.
- photograph – South African Tourism