THE leaking of a report on the consequences new immigration regulations may have on the travel and tourism industries is “disappointing”, the Tourism Business Council of SA (TBCSA) said on Tuesday.
“Although the report is not confidential, it was not meant to be in the public domain, rather, it was meant to provide a basis for an industry dialogue with home affairs and other key role-players,” CEO Mmatati Ramawela said in a statement.
On Monday, The Times reported that the leaked document revealed the regulations could lead to more than 100,000 jobs and R2.4bn in revenue being lost.
The TBCSA said it commissioned the sectoral impact assessment study on the new regulations in July, as part of preparations for discussions with the Department of Home Affairs.
TBCSA had been concerned about two regulations in particular.
The first required children aged under 18 to have unabridged birth certificates to enter or exit SA.
The second made it necessary for people from countries where SA required visas on entry to apply in person at South African foreign missions for biometric visa processing before leaving their home country.
Mr Ramawela said: “We remain steadfast on our decision not to publish the report or to discuss its contents outside the boundaries of the immigration task team.
“Furthermore we want to reaffirm our commitment to working with the Department of Home Affairs, the national Department of Tourism, and other stakeholders to find a win-win solution to addressing the security challenges of our country without impacting negatively on the travel and tourism industry”.