“We welcome the announcement by President Cyril Ramaphosa last night that the whole of South Africa will be moving to Alert Level 2. This is a good first step to supporting economic recovery in the Western Cape,” said Western Cape Minister of Finance and Economic Opportunities, David Maynier in a statement. “We are ready to open safely and we are ready to start doing business again in the Western Cape.”

According to Maynier, the Western Cape has long been calling for the reopening of the economy, especially the hospitality and tourism sectors. He noted that provincial government is pleased to have inter-provincial travel back on the table as well as gyms allowed to reopen and the ban on alcohol lifted.

“More details on these changes are likely to be confirmed with the release of the Alert Level 2 regulations by the Minister of Cooperative Governance and Traditional affairs, Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma. As we have with the previous Alert Levels, and in particular for the e-commerce, construction sectors and tourism sectors, where we think that consideration can be made for the further safe opening of the economy we will make submissions to national government requesting this,” Maynier added.

He also reminded locals of the ‘One Day’ campaign that encouraged travellers to keep Cape Town in mind as their favoured destination for the day when lockdown ended.

“For those living in South Africa, that day is now here. And so, we will be launching our ‘We Are Open’ domestic tourism campaign in September to encourage all to explore the Western Cape and safely discover the best that we have to offer as an affordable, world-class destination” he added.

Part of the exciting campaign will offer free options for children, encouraging families to travel with their little ones and take advantage of their opportunity to stay for free at selected establishments.

“This campaign will also include our ‘Kids Stay Free’ initiative to encourage families to take advantage of the offers for children to stay free at participating travel and accommodation partners across the Western Cape. Businesses have been working hard to implement the health and safety guidelines to stop the spread of Covid-19 in the workplace so that their staff and their customers are safe, and we have been working hard alongside them to provide the tools and resources they need to do this,” said Maynier.

Alongside this campaign the province is also launching a #StaySafeSaveJobs awareness campaign that encourages local businesses and staff to do all they can to adhere to safety protocols and continue to stop the spread of coronavirus.

“Times have been tough for businesses and people in the province who have had to make many sacrifices to allow us to prepare our healthcare system to fight the Covid-19 pandemic in the Western Cape. We all pulled together, and we worked together to stop the spread of Covid-19 in the Western Cape. That fight is not yet over, but we now also face a daunting unemployment pandemic, hunger and increased levels of poverty in the Western Cape. And so, in order to overcome this second pandemic, we will all have to continue pulling together, and working together as we did before,” he added.

While the province and a number of businesses have been hit hard by the lockdown, Maynier says the provincial government is committed to helping those in need survive the ongoing pandemic.

“We remain committed to supporting businesses through this crisis, and look forward to working together in our continued effort to save jobs and build a stronger, more resilient future for the Western Cape,” Maynier concluded.

Picture: Unsplash

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