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SA Tourism Collaborates with Airbnb to Support Recovery and Inclusive Growth

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SA Tourism Collaborates with Airbnb to Support Recovery and Inclusive Growth

Department of Tourism and Airbnb

Tourism Minister Patricia de Lille recently announced the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between the Department of Tourism and Airbnb. This collaboration aims to drive the recovery of South Africa’s tourism sector and foster inclusive tourism in the country.



The MoU signifies a joint effort between the government and the private sector to bolster tourism services, stimulate economic growth, and create more job opportunities. Minister de Lille emphasized that collaboration with the private sector is essential for significant growth and advancement in the tourism industry. She expressed her satisfaction in being the first African Ministry of Tourism to sign a collaborative MoU with a global company as successful as Airbnb.

The primary objective of this partnership is to establish a strong relationship between the Ministry, Airbnb, and other relevant entities, with the aim of harnessing and promoting tourism both domestically and internationally.


Minister de Lille pointed out the lack of sufficient information about the unregulated short-term rental subsector, which hampers informed policy decision-making.

Accessing Airbnb’s data will play a crucial role in making better-informed decisions. Through Airbnb’s extensive global reach and market expertise, the collaboration seeks to have a positive impact on local communities, travelers, and the tourism industry as a whole.

Under the MoU, regular engagement between the parties will take place to identify opportunities for strategic collaboration in driving inclusive tourism and ensuring fair and proportionate regulation of short-term rentals.

Velma Corcoran, Regional Lead: Middle East Africa at Airbnb, expressed enthusiasm about working with the Department of Tourism to build a more inclusive and sustainable tourism economy in South Africa.


Corcoran highlighted Airbnb’s platform as a means to empower individuals across the country to become tourism entrepreneurs. The goal is to break down systemic barriers to entry and enable more South Africans to participate in the tourism sector.

This MoU aligns with the objectives of the Tourism Sector Recovery Plan (TSRP), which is a crucial component of South Africa’s Economic Reconstruction and Recovery Plan. The TSRP, adopted by Cabinet in March 2021, aims to facilitate the sector’s recovery, preserve existing jobs, create new employment opportunities, balance supply and demand, and promote transformation within the industry.

SA Tourism Collaborates with Airbnb to Support Recovery and Inclusive Growth

SA Tourism Collaborates with Airbnb to Support Recovery and Inclusive Growth


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