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Infrastructure is linked to tourism

May 23,2018
With a liberal government encouraging Koreans to take more vacation days, many people, especially honeymooners, are looking beyond Asia for destinations off the beaten path.

Africa’s Travel Indaba wants to show that the continent provides just that. The annual travel trade show, Africa’s largest, took place in Durban, South Africa, earlier this month and included 7,000 attendees from 80 different countries.

One of the key topics was how to make tourism in Africa more appealing and sustainable in order to attract more investment. About 62 million people visit the continent annually, including 20,000 from Korea, according to tourism officials.

While some big cities and resorts have been developed with better infrastructure, more work needs to be done to welcome larger numbers of visitors, representatives said.

South African officials said it was crucial for the country to boost the number of jobs in tourism and services.

“The growth in tourism is not only dependent on infrastructural investment alone,” said Derek Hanekom, South Africa’s minister of tourism. “We need to invest in the quality of the visitor experience that we offer in order to attract more investment. To do this, it is important to continuously sustain and enhance our products.”

Besides getting more people to come see South Africa’s nature, the country is also trying to capitalize on its historical legacy. This year marks the 100th anniversary of the birth of South African President Nelson Mandela, and the foundation that commemorates his legacy is planning to hold various events in his honor.

BY LEE SUN-MIN [summerlee@joongang.co.kr]