Southern Cross Experiences (PTY) Ltd., Faerie Glen, South Africa

Southern Cross Experiences has all the expertise and knowledge to support the African Tourism Board in the successful implementation and future operation of the organisation for the benefit of Africa and its people, also in the background of
– Chinas “Belt and Road Initiative” and its “21st Century Maritime Silk Road” and the implementation of the same for Africa as stipulated in the “Forum on China-Africa Cooperation Johannesburg Action Plan (2016-2018)” and the Forum on China-Africa Cooperation Beijing Action Plan (2019-2021),

– The announcement of a fund of more than a billion Euros, made by the German Chancellor Angela Merkel during an Investment Forum on 31 October 2018 in Berlin, for the benefit of German and African SMME’s to invest into Africa. She stressed that Germany has focused on Asia over the last years, but that the future focus should be on Africa. The new fund is to provide loan and equity financing to European and German SMEs seeking to invest in Africa, also in equity funding for African SMEs as well as the formation of a team of experts, serving as advisors to prospective investors.

Over the past decades, African tourist destinations, especially cultural destinations missed out on the opportunities of International visitors and travellers to Africa. Even famous UNESCO World Heritage Sites such as Great Zimbabwe and Mapungubwe missed out on the masses of tourist travelling to African wildlife destinations due to a massive lack of physical and human infrastructure.

The DMC and responsible tourism development consultancy Southern Cross Experiences (PTY) Ltd. with its focus on international (mainly German and Chinese) visitors, realised the potential for African communities with under marketed highly significant tourist attractions to benefit from overseas tourist through infrastructure and socio-economic tourism development. Southern Cross developed a Programme called “The Southern Cross Heritage Tourism Development Programme” which is designed to support these communities in participating and benefitting in the international tourism industry, as we realised that all funding into African tourism initiatives will have no effect on the socio- economic development of African people if there is no infrastructure development, capacity building, skills development, education and information on the history and heritage of a site or destination and last not least a support to connect these people to international investors, tourism development funds and marketing structures such as trade fairs and E-Marketing.

Background:
Southern Cross Experiences (PTY) Ltd. was established in 2000 with a comprehensive portfolio of services includes VIP-, Luxury- and Corporate Travel Management, Sports Travel, Luxury Safaris, Expense Management and Conference-, Events- and Meetings Management. SCE provides expertise in global capabilities and local knowledge in the tourism industry, a strong heritage in the business travel arena and a true understanding of private and corporate travel cultures, including Socio Economic and Cultural Tourism Development Consulting.

Southern Cross Experiences (PTY) Ltd. – in partnership with its CSR organisation, the NGO Southern Cross Foundation – a NEPAD, RETOSA, UNESCO and UNILO cooperating organisation – has been set up to promote world-class socio economic heritage and conservation related community-based tourism projects in Africa, making use of the considerable cultural resources and assets that local communities in African countries possess.

Over the last almost two decades, both organisations, SCE and SCF, in cooperation with the Presidency of South Africa and other high-level links to Governments, both locally and internationally –elaborated and marketed a new concept, the Southern Cross Heritage and Tourism Development Programme to brand the Renaissance of the Ancient Trade Routes between Asia, the Middle East, Europe and Africa, trademarked in 2007 as “The Routes of Ancient Trade”.

As this concept was in line with the South African President of State concept of the “African Renaissance,” the South African Presidency appointed SCE as a consultancy to develop Mapungubwe and its Cultural Landscape and other cultural UNESCO World Heritage sites in South Africa as a role model for African World Heritage sites into a Tourism Cluster with the outcome to create a sustainable heritage tourism development concept for communities related to the “African Renaissance” and “Renaissance of Ancient Trade”.

At the 2006 BITTM (Beijing International Tourism and Travel Market) the CEO of SCE, Doris Woerfel presented the Southern Cross Heritage Tourism Development Programme and the development of the Ancient Trade Routes into tourist destinations to the Chinese Government.

During her 5-year’s stay in China, the CEO of SCE, Doris Woerfel, got a deep insight into the birth and development of Chinas’ President Xi Jinping’s “Belt & Road Initiative and “The 21st Century Maritime Silk Road Initiative”, which linked China with other Indian Ocean Rim countries, Central Asian countries and Europe with Africa. Evidence for this is i.e. that Chinese porcelain was found on Mapungubwe Hill, a UNESCO World Heritage Site and Transfrontier Conservation Area (TFCA) in South Africa, related to the Ancient African Kingdom Great Zimbabwe.

As China’s Belt and Road Initiative is fully in line with the Southern Cross Experiences trademarked “Routes of Ancient Trade” programme, Southern Cross Experiences founded the “The Belt and Road Luxury Travel Company” and “The Belt and Road Luxury Safari Company” with the idea to market the tourism and business destinations in Africa, Middle East and Europe to Chinese high-end corporate, VIP and private travellers.

In September 2018, “The 2018 Beijing Summit of the Forum of China-Africa Cooperation” and the Beijing Action Plan (2019-2021) emphasised the importance of the cooperation between the two “sides” in the Belt and Road Initiative.

The Action Plan stresses “the cooperation of both sides (China and Africa) in the “the comprehensive and effective implementation of the ten cooperation plans and the follow-up actions of the “Forum on China-Africa Cooperation Johannesburg Action Plan (2016-2018)”, and decide to, in the spirit of the Beijing Declaration – Toward an even Stronger China-Africa Community with a Shared Future, jointly advance Belt and Road cooperation, further strengthen the forward-looking China-Africa comprehensive strategic and cooperative partnership, and build an even stronger China-Africa community with a shared future for the benefits of both peoples….
– The two sides will take the Belt and Road Initiative as an opportunity to strengthen multi-dimensional, wide-ranging and in-depth cooperation for mutual benefits and common development. …
– The two sides believe that Africa is an important partner in Belt and Road cooperation, and pledge to leverage the strengths of the Forum and support China and Africa in jointly building the Belt and Road.” (from Beijing Action Plan (2019-2021)

(See full Beijing Action Plan (2019-2012) on:https://www.tralac.org/documents/resources/external-relations/china-africa/2165-forum-on-china-africa-cooperation-beijing-action-plan-2019-2021/file.html)

SCE can contribute to the ATB’s growth and success with our expertise in the following community-based initiatives and fields of expertise, as specified in the Southern Cross Heritage Tourism Development programme’s objectives:

• To promote Africa as a significant tourism- and corporate business destination along the “Belt and Road 21st Century Maritime Silk Road” (BRMSR)
• To support the ATB in fundraising and sponsorship activities with international funding (i.e. AIIB and GIZ)
• To cooperate with other Belt and Road related countries in tourism development along the Belt and Road
• To connect the ATB project managers to national and international UN agencies, leadership development institutes, tourism training Skills Development and Capacity building
agencies to achieve the following:
– Leadership development
– Community heritage tourism development planning
– Youth Entrepreneurship in Arts, Culture and Tourism
– Women in Arts and Culture
– Capacitating Work Groups in communities
– Eco-Cultural Tourism Guides
– Community Tourism Associations and Cooperatives

• To educate delegates about the tourism and business potential in Belt and Road connected countries through “fact-finding-missions”, buying trips, in- and export development,
also in the background of Chinese and other global cooperatives travelling to Africa in order to implement the Beijing Action Plan (2019-2021)
• To coordinate familiarisation tours to Africa for Chinese and other Indian Ocean Rim countries,
• To extend the existing database of strategic partners, organisations and investors in responsible tourism related destinations along the Belt and Road
• To make this database accessible to all strategic partners and alliances
• To educate on a global level student, school teachers, academics and the public in general in the recently discovered new history and Africa’s important role in Ancient Civilisations
• To disseminate information on the recently discovered cultural and historical links between Africa and China through educational Tours to sites of cultural and historical
importance like Great Zimbabwe and Mapungubwe, including collections and archives
• To initiate academic and research interaction and dialogues between Africa, China, Europe and the Indian Ocean Rim Region
• To develop tourism destinations in Africa through infrastructure and eco-cultural responsible tourism development
• To promote travel to these destinations, mostly African UNESCO World Heritage Sites and create and understanding of the cultural links between Africa and the Chinese and other
Belt and Road related countries
• To initiate Youth- and Women-Leadership workshops in designated Leadership Camps in Africa
• To empower BEE SMME Tour Operators through an African Emerging Tour Operator Network
• To gather Data on the African Heritage and physically re-write the African History in cooperation with a South African, African and International team of academics and experts.

 

by Doris Woerfel, CEO
Faerie Glen, South Africa

 

www.br-luxurysafaricompany.com

 

 

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