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Bringing the world to Africa at World Travel Market Africa<span><div class="notification with-heading dark-copy pink bg-light-grey"><div class="graphic with-border"> <i class="info note">​​</i> </div><div class="desc"><h4>Note to editors:</h4><p> <b></b>the following speech was delivered by the City’s Executive Deputy Mayor, Alderman Ian Neilson, at the opening of the World Travel Market Africa exhibition at the Cape Town International Convention Centre today, 19 April 2017. </p></div></div>​</span><p>Good morning, Minister Alan Winde, MP James Vos, MP Patrick Atkinson, Tim Harris (CEO of Wesgro), Sisa Ntshona (CEO of SA Tourism), Enver Duminy (CEO of Cape Town Tourism), Richard Mortimer and Carol Weaving of Reed Exhibitions.</p><p>It gives me great pleasure to welcome you all to Cape Town for the opening of World Travel Market (WTM) Africa. A special welcome to all those from around the world and from the rest of South Africa. I hope you will enjoy yourself here and achieve great success from this exhibition.</p><p>The City of Cape Town is a proud host and sponsor of WTM Africa, and we are delighted to welcome the world’s top tourism industry buyers, travel advisors, trade visitors and exhibitors to our city.</p><span><figure class="figure-credits right"><img class="responsive" alt="placeholder" src="" style="width:476px;" /><figcaption> <p> © City of Cape Town</p> </figcaption> </figure> Cape Town is not only a holiday destination, but also a world-class events, business, arts and culture destination. Cape Town is the events and conferences capital of Africa.<br><p>WTM Africa, as well as its two co-located events, ILTM Africa and ibtm Africa, bring together all the stakeholders that are helping us to realise this vision. </p><p>ILTM Africa focuses on the luxury travel experience, while ibtm Africa brings together key decision-makers from the meetings, events and incentives industry.</p><p>As the leading B2B exhibition for Africa’s leisure travel industry, WTM Africa caters to both inbound and outbound markets. Over the next few days you will have the opportunity to engage with a diverse array of offerings, both on the exhibition floor and in the various workshops, panel discussions, and conference sessions, which will be led by internationally acclaimed experts. </p>​​</span>I trust that the exhibitors will make the most of this opportunity to generate sales leads, raise brand awareness, and develop and maintain relationships. With around 700 exhibitors and a jam-packed programme, I am sure that you will be spoilt for choice.<p>Our vision to expand our tourism offering for both local and international visitors includes strengthening links between Cape Town and other major cities.</p><p>Many African cities are enjoying growth in a number of sectors and are eager to expand their offering to the rest of the world. Cape Town has long been a strategic meeting point between east and west, and is therefore an ideal gateway to new markets in the rest of Africa. </p><p>With the launch of the Cape Town Air Access Initiative, the City, together with the Western Cape Government, Airports Company of South Africa, and a number of airlines, has successfully secured a number of non-stop direct flights to a set of strategic destinations.</p><p>Since its inception in 2015, Cape Town Air Access has landed seven new routes and facilitated 10 route expansions for our region, with 500 000 additional seats added during 2016 alone.</p><p>The team is currently focused on developing the business cases and negotiating with airlines for non-stop routes to the United States, Asia and a number of strategic destinations in the rest of Africa, and we are confident that there will be continuing growth in the direct connections between Cape Town and key international cities.</p><p>As an opportunity city, we are also working to create an enabling environment for the growth of emerging tourism entrepreneurs. This year, the City of Cape Town has once again selected a number of local entrepreneurs to participate in WTM Africa.</p><p>The entrepreneurs will be afforded a unique opportunity to showcase their products and services, and engage directly with some of the world’s top travel and tourism industry buyers.</p><p>Of these 20 entrepreneurs, 10 are returning from last year, with a brief to secure at least five meetings a day with national or international buyers.   </p><p>The exposure that these up-and-coming entrepreneurs will receive is invaluable. WTM Africa affords them an opportunity to meet potential distributors and buyers, test market interest, evaluate the competition, identify strategic partners, and position themselves globally. </p><p>This year, I am also looking forward to experiencing a new feature on the City of Cape Town stand, which will give visitors the chance to experience the thrill of paragliding off Signal Hill or the excitement of sandboarding on the Atlantic dunes near Cape Town, all through virtual reality. I encourage you all to take the time to enjoy this virtual reality experience as well.</p><p>Another highlight for the City this year is our participation in a panel discussion on travel tech potential in Cape Town, which will be facilitated by the City’s Director of Enterprise and Investment, Lance Greyling. </p><span>​<figure class="figure-credits left"><img class="responsive" alt="placeholder" src="" style="width:514px;" /><figcaption> <p> © City of Cape Town</p> </figcaption> </figure> </span>Travel technology is one of the fastest growing sectors in the world, and the Travel Tech Show at WTM Africa provides the perfect platform for suppliers to meet with key decision-makers across the world looking to source technology systems.<br><p>Join our team in the Travel Tech Theatre tomorrow as we discuss the travel tech potential in Cape Town and share the benefits of establishing your business in the city. </p><p>You’ll hear from local start-ups that are disrupting the travel industry and discover how Cape Town is incubating the next generation of tech talent. Some of the topics that will be covered include blogging, social media, mobile, tech and hospitality technology.</p><p>And finally, for those who are more inclined toward art than technology, I am pleased to announce an exciting new addition to Cape Town’s cultural landscape: the Zeitz Museum of Contemporary Art Africa (Zeitz MOCAA), set to open at the V&A Waterfront in September. </p><p>This museum will comprise over 9 500 m², spread over nine floors. With the goal of developing a new art-loving, museum-going audience, one entire floor will be dedicated to education.</p><p>The Zeitz MOCAA will showcase the Zeitz Collection, founded in 2002 by Jochen Zeitz, and will be Africa’s first major museum of contemporary art, representing work from both Africa and the diaspora.  </p><p>As the most visited site in Africa, with over 24 million visitors annually, the V&A Waterfront is the perfect venue to share the cultural artefacts and ideas of Africa with the world. The Zeitz MOCAA is sure to become an iconic part of the Cape Town experience, and we look forward to being home to this major new cultural institution.</p><p>In conclusion, I hope that you make the most of the packed WTM Africa programme, and that you have remembered to schedule in some extra time to enjoy the sites and experiences of our beautiful city. </p><p>Thank you for joining us this morning, and enjoy the show.  </p><p><br><strong>End</strong><br></p>2017-04-18T22:00:00ZGP0|#1d539e44-7c8c-4646-887d-386dc1d95d70;L0|#01d539e44-7c8c-4646-887d-386dc1d95d70|City news;GTSet|#62efe227-07aa-45e7-944c-ceebacca891d;GP0|#8b03f782-9eb6-455f-82e9-6429b6354cf9;L0|#08b03f782-9eb6-455f-82e9-6429b6354cf9|SpeechesGP0|#fa276326-532d-41e8-9ce8-e1680bee6444;L0|#0fa276326-532d-41e8-9ce8-e1680bee6444|marketing;GTSet|#2e3de6c1-9951-4747-8f53-470629a399bb;GP0|#98e59877-15ca-45ba-b1e2-0c46464f9c9c;L0|#098e59877-15ca-45ba-b1e2-0c46464f9c9c|deputy mayor;GP0|#43259544-912c-4057-8b99-b8e8a01bfae4;L0|#043259544-912c-4057-8b99-b8e8a01bfae4|Cape Town1

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