Our role is to mobilise the private sector to support government initiatives. We take our cues from the continental plan through bodies like SADC and other development-oriented bodies. Ours is not to be a lobby group but to give governments a boost in their programmes, by that we mean financial resources, capacity, expertise and other aspects of development.
What we do is unpack these government-endorsed master plans and try identifying the areas within them that have business-specific interest. We help evaluate how the projects would support the growth of businesses or the projects that business believes can be successfully implemented.
Overall we see ourselves as development partners that help governments execute and drive projects forward with the only caveat being that we only work on stuff that business believes in.
Tourism on the African continent is on a positive growth trajectory. Indeed, tourism numbers on the continent have grown at a rate of 8.6% over the past year as compared to a global average of 7%. When it comes to tourism, Africa is the fastest-growing market in the world.
Despite this, there remain significant challenges to grow the levels of Intra-African tourism, with many of Africa's tourists finding it easier and more attractive to travel to Europe or Asia.
Tourism acts a catalyst to wider economic growth and economic integration. Increased growth and collaboration between Africa's tourism destinations could act as a significant job creator across the continent. Where do Africa's leaders see opportunity in the future of Intra-African tourism?
"The relationship between industry, private sector, and commerce is emphasised in whatever we do. We work to ensure that the research does not end up gathering dust on library shelves, but is used to better society. As a higher education institution, we are prepared to sit at the table with other stakeholders such as the private sector and the public sector.
All this is embedded in our vision which is translated into a strategic plan, as well as our integrated transformation plan. In a nutshell, we want to be seen as an institution that is a thought leader producing quality graduates and paying its dues to the cause of social justice.
"The notion that the fourth industrial revolution will affect everybody, and their job is both true and false. We don't refer to it as the fourth industrial revolution because that makes it unclear to many people.
In our eyes, we interpret it as a time with increased connectivity, better software development, artificial intelligence, as well as other technologies that redefine the world of work. Though some manual jobs will be lost, we must not see the fourth industrial revolution as a threat but rather an opportunity to diversify our economy."