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SANParks Tourism Investment Summit 2022

  • Date: 31 March 2022
  • Location: The Maslow Hotel, Sandton, Johannesburg

The allure of conserved areas to both international and domestic tourists is immense, evidenced by the six million people on average who, prior to the pandemic visited our parks annually, many of whom are repeat visitors. Research has indicated that Table Mountain and Kruger National Park are considered bucket list destinations in the majority of South Africa’s inbound markets and both are coincidentally under the management of SANParks. It would therefore not be misleading to state that SANParks as a conservation entity is integral to the success of the country’s tourism industry.

In the past decade and a half, our partnerships with various private sector entities have been pivotal in enhancing the experience of tourists who visit our parks. It is through these partnerships that we have been able to provide an array of facilities that are vital to an enriched tourist experience. These include restaurants, five-star lodges, retail and a wide array of adventure activities.

The National Environmental Management of Protected Areas Act (Act 57 of 2003) officially mandates SANParks to create destinations for nature-based tourism in a manner that is not harmful to the environment. In this vein, the SANParks Commercialisation Strategy was birthed in 2000 in a bid to enhance the parks as nature tourism destinations by diversifying tourism offerings in partnership with the private sector. Through this strategy, SANParks has earned, in the past twenty years, a total income of R1,394 billion through its public-private partnerships. The revenue generated through these partnerships has contributed significantly to the funding of conservation and the overall sustainability of SANParks.

In over twenty years, the SANParks Tourism PPP portfolio has expanded to 60 diverse projects spanning accommodation, restaurants, retail and activities. The revenues of the tourism activities within our 20 national parks, some under private ownership, others managed by ourselves, had in the period prior to the Covid-19 pandemic, enabled SANParks to rely on government funding of less than 20% of its total operational budget – effectively the entity had become virtually self-funded.

This 2022 Tourism Investment Summit comes at a crucial time in the rebuilding of our economy following the devastation wrought by the Covid-19 pandemic. We thus invite you, the private sector investor, as we unveil new tourism business opportunities within our national parks, in the hope that it will whet your appetite sufficiently for further engagement and discussion. The opportunities detailed here are derived from the SANParks Responsible Tourism Strategy, which is premised on connecting to a broader South African society without compromising conservation standards. These are viable businesses and have chosen them strategically with the aim of filling major product gaps to widen the appeal of the parks to new markets while ensuring that the principal drawcards to our parks are not diluted and continue to hold appeal for our loyal traditional markets.

Key concessionaire contracts such as the Table Mountain Cable Car, Cape Point and seven lodges in the renowned Kruger National Park will become available over the next three to five years with a pipeline release of over 100 new tourism investment opportunities over the next ten years.

Contact Us

For more information or to enquire about PPP investment opportunities in our South African National Parks, please contact us at [email protected]