More than R2 billion is expected to be pumped into the KwaZulu-Natal economy this festive season as people head to the province for its sunny weather and golden beaches.

Durban - More than R2 billion is expected to be pumped into the KwaZulu-Natal economy this festive season.

This is according to projections from the KwaZulu-Natal government who this week committed to making the province a safe haven for tourists.

KwaZulu-Natal Premier Sihle Zikalala,  speaking at a meeting of the KZN provincial executive council on Wednesday said they projected an economic impact of R2.3 billion this festive season.

Zikalala also reflected on a number of important developments within the province.

He said they were committed to creating a safer KZN by intensifying their law enforcement operation during the festive season, a time when there are high traffic volumes and millions of visitors in the province.

“To this end, we are repositioning KwaZulu-Natal as a mecca of tourism and leading destination by ensuring zero tolerance to any form of crime. As KwaZulu-Natal, we want to ensure that our citizens and hundreds of thousands of tourists feel safe over the festive season,” Zikalala said.

“In this province, we have destinations that are abundant in natural beauty and we have diverse heritage and culture. Our projections are that the economic impact for this period alone is estimated at R2.3 billion. This will be as a result of 1.1 million domestic trips and 117 500 international arrivals from December 1 to 16 January.”

The premier added that during this time, from December 4 to December 11, the MEC for Finance, Ravi Pillay, will act as premier while Zikalala participates in the Climate Change Summit in Spain.

Moreover, earlier this week, King Goodwill Zwelithini kaBhekuzulu marked the 48th anniversary of his coronation which took place on December 3, 1971.

“We take this opportunity to express our boundless gratitude to His Majesty for the leadership he has provided to the people of KwaZulu-Natal over the years and we wish him many more productive years on the throne,” Zikalala said.

Daily News