Today, Wesgro enters the second day of their annual municipal engagement in Caledon, in the Cape Overberg District Municipality. The two-day workshop’s main objective is to better understand the role that municipalities across the Cape play in promoting tourism, trade, investment and film.
The first day of the workshop was attended by more than 10 mayors, with representation from the municipalities of Saldanha Bay, Langeberg, Cape Winelands, Theewaterskloof, Cape Agulhas, Overstrand, Overberg, Swellendam, Oudtshoorn and Hessequa. Attendees also included municipal managers, local economic development managers and mayoral committee members.
The Minister of Economic Opportunities, Alan Winde, commented in his opening address that the Western Cape currently has the lowest unemployment rate in South Africa. “Sound governance, red tape reduction and radically doing our jobs is what will take our province to the next level.”
Proceedings included key heads of department addressing delegates on what services they can offer to assist the different regions. Further to this, each mandate hosted a panel discussion around a key issue faced by the industry.
Bringing in industry specialists from Cape Town and the Western Cape to give input and stimulate discussion around these issues, topics included:
- Export Promotion as a Key Driver for Economic Development – Challenges and Opportunities for the Western Cape
- Driving growth in the time of the drought
- Business Tourism: Incentive travel and corporate meetings – How can your region benefit from this sector and are you ready for this market
- Leisure Tourism: Being Halal Tourism ready in the Western Cape
- Film & Media Promotion: Defining and working towards film friendly locations
- Investment Promotion: Investment climate around primary agriculture and agro-processing
The day’s proceedings closed with an open dialogue where each municipal region had the opportunity to publicly express areas they require assistance with. Actions to be taken by the agency will be presented today, with feedback from the heads of department on what the ‘Next Steps’ will be.
“The main objective of the workshop is to collectively find ways that we can grow the local economies of the Western Cape. The workshop is intended to break down barriers, provide a safe and open space for dialogue and provide us with insight into how we, Wesgro as the official Tourism, Trade and Investment Promotion Agency of the province, can help the regions develop further.”
The evening was concluded with an address by the MEC for Finance, Dr Ivan Meyer, who addressed the gathering on the topic of “Global connections with local actions: Economic Diplomacy, Trade and Investment”. He also announced that the 2019 Municipal Workshop will be hosted in Mossel Bay.