South Africa's new child visa rules to negatively affect tourism in the first year - Minister

South Africa’s new child visa rules to negatively affect tourism in the first year – Minister

New Delhi, July 9, 2015 (Reuters/NAN) South Africa has expressed the feelings that the new visa rules for children would negatively affect tourism in the first year they apply, but would not damage the vital sector’s long-term expectations.

Malusi Gigaba, Home Affairs Minister said on Thursday during a visit to New Delhi, India, that the rules were aimed at preventing child trafficking.

He said the visa required minors to have an unabridged birth certificate with full details of parents as well as a passport, visa and other documents.

Gigaba said critics argue they are hurting tourism, which contributes nearly a tenth of South Africa’s economic output.

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“We don’t think we should be so ambitious as not to expect a drop.

Gigaba said every country balanced its voracious desire for tourists with the desire to secure the country and South Africa was trying to do the same.

“To balance the economic and security needs have become very imperative.’’

The minister said Air China was considering suspending flights to South Africa because of the visa requirements.

Gigaba said Pretoria was working with the Chinese to resolve the issue, but insisted that his department was not going to back down on the visa rules. (Reuters/NAN)

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