Tourism Policies and the Space Economy of the Eastern Cape Province of South Africa: A Critical Realist Perspective
The key objective of this paper is to x-ray the situation in the tourism development process of the post-1994 tourism sector of the Eastern Cape Province. This paper uses empirical data to examine the extent to which actors in the Eastern Cape tourism sector interpreted the national tourism policies. The White Paper on Development and Promotion of Tourism in South Africa is the blueprint of the policy document. Other instruments such as the Tourism Black Economic Empowerment (BEE) Charter also exist to implement BEE in the tourism industry. To explain the historically changing nature of tourism in the Eastern Cape, two phases were used as the basis for data collection: pre-1994 and post-1994. Each period is defined as a particular combination of tourism policies and particular stakeholders in achieving certain development goals. To measure the transformation that has taken place in the tourism sector since 1994, “t-test” was used to examine the statistical significance of some simple correlation results. Fewer number of tourism products existed in the province in the period pre-1994. The dramatic change in the number of tourism businesses, pre- and post-1994 is explained in terms of different government policies that prevailed during this period.
Keywords: Tourism Policies, Space Economy, Eastern Cape Province, Critical Realism, Black Economic Empowerment