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KZN faces staggering R700m in lost tourism revenue after Comrades Marathon cancellation

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KZN faces staggering R700m in lost tourism revenue after Comrades Marathon cancellation
Gerda Steyn crosses the Comrades Marathon finish line in 2019. The marathon has been postponed for the 2nd year in a row because of the Covid-19 pandemic.

Image: Jackie Clausen

KwaZulu-Natal is facing a whopping R700m in lost tourism revenue after the cancellation of the 2021 Comrades Marathon.

This is yet one other blow for the province as the Comrades Marathon Affiliation (CMA) has already said the cancellation of this year’s match due to Covid-19 would consequence in losses amounting to better than R20m for them. The enviornment-renowned match used to be scheduled for June 13.

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The spokesperson for the provincial division of business building‚ tourism and environmental affairs‚ Bheki Mbanjwa‚ said they’re bracing for lots-reaching results in your whole tourism impress chain.

“In 2019‚ the Comrades Marathon generated bigger than R700m and created bigger than 1,000 transient jobs in the sphere. Unquestionably‚ the cancellation of this huge match will definitely have a negative influence‚” said Mbanjwa.

“The Comrades Marathon is regarded as one of the most province’s largest sports tourism events. Over time this match has had a broad and distinct influence on the province’s economic system.”

Comrades Marathon organisers will again host a digital spin this year and the provincial division of sport‚ arts‚ culture and recreation said it would enhance them.

“We now don’t have any longer bought a matter from CMA yet. As a division we now have repeatedly had a proper working relationship with them‚ which is why we supported them once they hosted the digital Comrades Marathon remaining year.

“We can continue to enact so for upcoming events. They’ve no longer reported any financial challenges with the division‚” said departmental spokesperson Phathisa Mfuyo.

Mbanjwa said puny businesses who are suppliers to the world’s premier extremely-marathon are the hardest hit and they’re exploring solutions to provide them reduction.

“The division is mobilising sources to reinforce the nationwide reduction fund. The puny print of this fund will most likely be communicated in due path.

“Last year‚ a once-off capped grant help to tourism puny‚ medium and micro enterprises used to be disbursed by the nationwide division of tourism. This grant used to be capped at R50,000 per entity and its aim used to be to mitigate the influence of Covid-19 on the tourism sector.

“A complete of 607 KwaZulu-Natal businesses within the tourism and hospitality sector bought help as section of the nationwide reduction fund.

“This supposed KwaZulu-Natal businesses bought R30,35m of the R200m arena aside for the rest fund‚” said Mbanjwa.

by Mahlatse Mphahlele

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KZN faces staggering R700m in lost tourism revenue after Comrades Marathon cancellation