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R20m Tourism Relief Fund applications open
​Tourism KwaZulu-Natal has opened the second phase of the R20 million Tourism Relief Fund. The fund is to financially assist distressed tourism businesses and operators in the province. Tourism business are invited to apply before the closing date on 29 October.

The KZN Department of Economic Development, Tourism and Environmental Affairs (EDTEA) together with Tourism KwaZulu-Natal will work with Community Tourism Organisations (CTOs) and tourism formations to ensure that as many qualifying tourism businesses facing distress, are supported.

Given the low number of successful applicants in the first phase and the fact that there is still budget available for the tourism relief fund, EDTEA decided that a second intake of applications be considered under revised selection criteria to accommodate more tourism businesses.

The Tourism Relief programme forms part of government’s efforts to mitigate the effects of the Covid-19 pandemic on the tourism sector. Ravi Pillay, KZN MEC for Economic Development, Tourism and Environmental Affairs said the fund is to assist businesses to mitigate the effects of the pandemic, prevent job losses and get them back towards a path of stability. “KwaZulu-Natal is a leading tourist destination whose success relies on a thriving sector that includes tour operators, accommodation establishments, restaurants, tourist guides, attractions and other tourist offerings. It is essential that the value chain works in its entirety.”

Businesses and entities operating within the province are eligible to apply for the tourism relief. These include accommodation establishments, hospitality and related services, travel and related services, MICE sub-sector (meeting, incentives, conference, and exhibitions), rickshaw operators, arts and craft co-operatives and traditional performance groups.

There is a specific criterion for each sector. For example, rickshaw operators must be registered as an informal trader with eThekwini Municipality and be in service for one year or more before Covid-19. The once off grant for tourism enterprises will be capped at R50 000 per applicant. This includes destination management companies, professional conference organisers, incentive buyers and exhibition companies. For arts and craft cooperatives and traditional performers it will be capped at R10 000 and R4 500 for tour guides and rickshaw operators.

Application forms and sector criterion are accessible online at www.zulu.org.za. The completed online application form together with supporting documents must be uploaded and submitted on the online system of applications.

A call centre has been set up to guide and provide information to applicants. The call centre can be contacted on 031 816 6610  between 08h00 and 16h30 from Monday to Friday or email: kzntourismrelief@zulu.org.za

For general queries, contact 031 366 755/1/ 063 698 7455 or email: nhlanhla@zulu.org.za
nonduduzo.ngcongo@durban.gov.za 
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