The Cape Town International Jazz Festival which takes place this weekend has grown into a precious feature within South Africa’s drive to further boost its tourism industry.
This view has been restated by Nick Seewer, CEO of Pepperclub Hotel & Spa, who said in addition to the economic boost, events of this scale also promote the country as a tourist destination, as well as to allow the country to showcase its ability to host world class events.
Seewer says that the event provides not only an opportunity to view international and local artists performing, but it also has a significant beneficial impact on the local economy and tourism.
He said South Africa has steadily grown in momentum internationally following the 2010 FIFA World Cup and needs to continue in earnest to market the country and destination in order to create sustainable job creation.
“Successfully hosting the 2010 FIFA World Cup and more recently, several internationally renowned musicians, such as the Red Hot Chilli Peppers and Lady Gaga, emphasises how South Africa is increasingly being noticed across the world as a destination for staging world class events.”
This weekend’s Cape Town International Jazz Festival is 14th edition features the world’s best artists. Highlights include Orquesta Buena Vista Social Club, Kirk Whalum and Jill Scott. The event has grown grown in leaps and bounds. The organizer of the event espAfrika has declared that the festival has grown to become the fourth largest of its kind in the world. It is attracting about 34 000 people. espAfrika said last year’s edition made a contribution of R457m to the gross domestic product (GDP) of the Western Cape and R860m to the national GDP.
Seewer says in order to meet the tourism ministry’s target of creating more than 225 000 jobs in the tourism sector by 2020, there needs to be an assertive drive by the industry to continue the momentum the sector has generated over the past few years. According He says taking full advantage of events, such as the Cape Town International Jazz Festival, which created 2 715 jobs in 2012, is a way for the industry to meet its target.
espAfrika also revealed that festival goers who traveled to Cape Town in 2010 to attend the festival spent most of their money on accommodation, followed by food, restaurants and transport. The 2012 Cape Town International Jazz Festival summary report revealed that the festival generates R29.7 million based on visitor spending and the total direct spending amounts to R50.8 million.
Seewer says that this research proves that the capital generated by the festival flows directly into the tourism industry, which is very encouraging.