What is the situation/progress with the proposed hotels in Kruger?

General Information & Discussion on Hotels in Kruger
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Richprins
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Re: What is the situation/progress with the proposed hotels?

Post by Richprins » Tue Sep 25, 2012 7:57 pm

Twigga wrote:

RP's replies in red:

Product diversification in the Kruger Park
Sanparks Times September 2012
Paul Daphne – Sanparks acting head communications

Sanparks has over the past year or so (Since August 2009) come in for a degree of criticism relating to plans to build a conference lodge at Skukuza, and to develop the Malelane Safari lodge concession in the south of the Kruger National Park (KNP). Critics of these developments have tended to paint a distorted picture of processes within Sanparks to develop further full service tourist facilities within KNP, and have put forward the proposition that Sanparks is so focused on revenue generation that it is abandoning its conservation mandate. (Agreed by the initial EIA company for the Malelane Safari Lodge, and the Parliamentary standing Committe on Environmental Affairs, and the Minister...who rejected the Lodge!?)

It is our belief that the objections that are currently doing the rounds in the public discourse are based on a narrow view of those who are unable to move with the times and recognize that the management of our protected area estate has not remained static, and has evolved with time.(That is a lot of people, including the abovementioned, WESSA, and many foreigners) The very survival of our national park system, and its persistence into the long-term future depends on our ability to adapt to the needs and pressures of the 21st century. The history of evolution teaches us that those species or systems that are unable to adapt to a changing environment inevitably become extinct. (No kidding!)It is precisely in relation to this principle that Sanparks is compelled to be adaptable in its management of national parks in order to ensure that these national treasures are there into the long term for the enjoyment of future generations. (Says who, after 100 years? :-? )

The development of full service facilities is part of a necessary process of product diversification within the park. (Says who, after 100 years? :-? ) A number of protagonists of the “anti – hotel” lobby have stated that they are happy with the existing rest camps, bush camps and camp sites in the park, but what they do not acknowledge is that there is a large potential client base for KNP and other parks who do not in fact want to cater for themselves and who are looking for a full service offering within a national park. There is a large demand for conferencing from corporate and government departments.(There is already ample opportunity for visitors requiring such pampering at various Concession Lodges within the Park...operating at around 40% occupancy, Conference facilities have existed in Kruger for 30 years.) By offering a new product within the KNP, we will not only be able to enhance our revenue generation potential but also to expand our loyal customer base beyond traditional support base. Despite what our critics say, Sanparks values its traditional support base particularly in respect of those of our loyal customers who travel year after year to the KNP. The fact that our domestic visitors numbers have remained at exceptionally high levels, despite the recession, bears testimony to the fact that we have retained our traditional customers. (So not "Purists" anymore? :-? )

We remain committed to these users of the Park, but this does not mean that we should not also be reaching out to meet the needs of a new and growing market. Efforts to generate additional income from our National Parks should not be seen as being in contradiction to the conservation mandate. In fact it is these efforts that provide the best chance for the success of conservation and protected area management into the future. The state subsidy has been decreasing in relative terms since 1990. From a contribution of approx. 50% of our operating budget in the 1950s the state subsidy now stands at a mere 13% of total budget. While we are well supported by government in terms of expanded works programmes and infrastructure funding, the operational grant from the state has been reduced over the last four years, as has been the case with other state departments and public entities. (Kruger has shown a profit every year. The current developments will cost an immense amount of money, and who knows when this input will eventually begin to show a return on investment!? Government is not unwilling to help, as shown by the speed with which Police and Army hve been dispatched to addreess the rhino poaching crisis free of charge!)

We have an obligation to government (Rubbish!!!! Ask the people...not yourselves! You are in the service of the population of SA, not the other way round!) and to society at large to generate as much as we can through sustainable tourism – without compromising our conservation mandate. It is in this context that treasury has requested that we explore ways in which we can actually increase our own revenue generation. (Proof please!) Tourism in parks is inextricably linked to conservation. It generates the other 87% of operational funding required to employ the rangers that you see today, scientists, vets,pilots,technicians,cleaners, maintenance staff and others. Dr David Mabunda ,CEO of Sanparks has repeatedly emphasised the significant role that our national parks play in rural local economies and in both direct and indirect job creation. (The communities have been perfectly well aware of that for decades!)

According to Dr Mabunda “Every working day approx. 11 000 people go to work in national parks across our country, apart from the many multiplier effects and downstream jobs that are created around the parks. If Park-based tourism were unable to grow, the entire system would collapse (Nonsense)and the responsibility would then be placed at my doorstep” (Also nonsense. You would have been fired over the rhino poaching already, if there were any accountability clause!) Dr Mabunda adds that if we are to perform our conservation mandate effectively and to manage the national park system, which has grown significantly over the last 10 -15 years, then we will need a significant increase in our own tourism revenue generation in order to be able to grow our operational budgets. Sanparks is recognized as one of the leading conservation agencies of the world and it is precisely our ability under the current leadership of Sanparks to move with the times and to anticipate the pressures and demands of the 21 century that has placed us in this position. T

The bottom line is that there is no inherent contradiction between conservation and sustainable tourism based income generation but rather that the success of the former is based on the success of the latter. (What if you're wrong?)
Last edited by Richprins on Tue Sep 25, 2012 10:13 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: What is the situation/progress with the proposed hotels?

Post by H. erectus » Tue Sep 25, 2012 8:57 pm

Well done Boon!!! Keep it up!!
Heh,.. H.e

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Re: What is the situation/progress with the proposed hotels?

Post by H. erectus » Tue Sep 25, 2012 9:02 pm

What if Sanparks were wrong in theory!!???
Heh,.. H.e

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Re: What is the situation/progress with the proposed hotels?

Post by Richprins » Tue Sep 25, 2012 10:16 pm

When SanParks' top management entered the realm of politics, they also unfortunately entered the realm of not being wrong, I'm afraid!

Comes with the territory... :evil:
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Re: What is the situation/progress with the proposed hotels?

Post by Twigga » Wed Sep 26, 2012 8:54 am

-O
Goodness RPrins! Looks like "die Slag van bloedrivier" after your edit!

Think it's time to get this edited version published \O

Where will this all end, enjoy the "old" Kruger every time you get the chance.....
:-(
Somewhere in Kruger

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Re: What is the situation/progress with the proposed hotels?

Post by Richprins » Wed Sep 26, 2012 9:25 am

There is a large demand for conferencing from government departments.


The plot thickens!

0()
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Re: What is the situation/progress with the proposed hotels?

Post by H. erectus » Wed Sep 26, 2012 6:54 pm

Richprins wrote:The plot thickens!
Or maybe could just be thinning!! I guess it quite
normal, as a novice sanparks, in the entertainment
industry, it normal to support ones own wild ventures
hoping for the world out there to indulge in this incredulous,
and hideous idea!!

I wish to state,-Not a bad idea for .gov to make use of
their natural heritage as a marketing ploy aimed at the
world out there.

However, don't fill beds in camp sites with .gov officials
in order to make the demand look greater!!

Who will be footing the bill at end of day??
Heh,.. H.e

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Re: What is the situation/progress with the proposed hotels?

Post by Richprins » Wed Sep 26, 2012 6:57 pm

The interesting thing is that SanParks have bluntly refused to divulge what the occupancy of the Skukuza Conference Centre has been...surely it would have been headline news from them if it was pumping? -O-
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Re: What is the situation/progress with the proposed hotels?

Post by H. erectus » Wed Sep 26, 2012 7:08 pm

Richprins wrote:SanParks have bluntly refused to divulge
They would, 'cause it reflects bad upon themselves!! They need to be
seen moreso as a entity of irresistable desire. They desperately need
.gov and vice versa!!!
Heh,.. H.e

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Re: What is the situation/progress with the proposed hotels?

Post by Richprins » Wed Sep 26, 2012 7:45 pm

.gov used Mopani a few years ago...no problems? -O-
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