Tourism Transformation Fund to help black businesses in the tourism sector. Photo: Facebook
DURBAN - The Department of Tourism and the National Empowerment Fund (NEF) have collaborated to create the Tourism Transformation Fund.

According to the Department of Tourism, the tourism fund has been created to provide financial support for projects that will bring about meaningful transformation in the tourism sector.

NEF said that the grant funding from the Tourism Transformation Fund will decrease the funding gap that may exist between future investor's own contribution and the approved loan finance and/or equity contribution by the NEF for tourism projects.

The fund targets black businesses and communities that will invest in tourism capital projects.

The projects must trigger empowerment, destination development, job creation and skills development. R120 million in funding has been set aside to assist black businesses in growing their businesses as stated in the Tourism BBBEEE act.

Those who wish to apply need to meet the following criteria:

1. At least 51% of their business must be black-owned
2. The business must be registered as a legal entity in South Africa.

Projects that have significant ownership and participation of black women, youth and people with disabilities will be given preference. The projects must also be already involved the Department of Tourism.

Funding per applicant from the Tourism Transformation Fund is capped at R5 million.

Those who wish to apply visit the Department of Tourism site of the NEF site. Applications are already open and will close on August 31, 2018.