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15th February, 2019.

SA Tourism announced new dates for 2019 Africa Travel Indaba

The 2019 Africa Travel Indaba has been brought forward by four days as it will now take place from 2nd - 4th May 2019 at the Inkosi Albert Luthuli International Convention Centre in Durban.

Last week, President Cyril Ramaphosa, announced in his state of the nation address that the national election will take place on 08 May 2019 which would have coincided with Indaba.

A task team was set up by the Chief Executive Officer of South African Tourism (SA Tourism), Sisa Ntshona, to explore all available options and it was decided that moving Indaba forward was the best possible option.

The task team comprised of representatives of the following organisations: SA Tourism; Department of Tourism; Durban ICC; Tourism KZN; Tourism Business Council of South Africa (TBCSA) and eThekwini,

The task team took into account various factors and permutations in reaching the new date.

"The national election is the cornerstone of our democracy and is a celebration of our freedom in South Africa," says Ntshona. It is an important date and occasion for all South Africans and we need to acknowledge and respect the date."

"At the same time, I must express my heartfelt gratitude to the Tourism industry for their understanding of the situation, I have received many calls, emails and texts with advice and support. I am really impressed to experience how the tourism sector gets together. I also want to thank the Indaba Organising Committee involved with Indaba they are Tourism KwaZulu Natal, ICC and Media release eThekwini (Durban Tourism) for being accommodating with regards to the change," added Ntshona.

"From a Tourism Business Council of South Africa (TBCSA) perspective, we presented comprehensive views of the sector to the task team and ultimately the key thing for us was to get a new date as quickly as possible," commented Tshifhiwa Tshivhengwa, CEO at TBCSA.

"We will now work with all our trade partners to ensure that there is smooth transition into the new date as many would have had plans in place already for the previous date. We still have a key role to play in achieving Indaba objectives of selling South Africa and the continent to the rest of the world."

Indaba is the biggest travel exhibition show in Africa with over 7,000 delegates from 80 countries at last year edition.

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