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RECOVERY, NOT SURVIVAL, WILL GET US THROUGH COVID-19

RECOVERY, NOT SURVIVAL, WILL GET US THROUGH COVID-19

While Covid-19 has wrought unprecedented devastation globally, it has also brought unprecedented opportunity, spurring innovation, transformation and best practice, according to Wesgro CEO Tim Harris.

Writing in the State of Cape Town Central City Report 2019 – A year in review (SCCR) - the annual report on the CBD’s economy published by the Cape Town Central City Improvement District (CCID) and released today - Harris says: “We have seen how local businesses are pioneering new ways of doing things, building resilience now, as well as for the future.”

Harris says Wesgro - the official destination marketing, investment and trade promotion agency for the Western Cape - together with the Western Cape Government and the City of Cape Town had a three-pronged approach to the pandemic: response, adaptation and recovery.

Findings of the eighth edition of the SCCR reveal while it will take time to recover fully, Cape Town and its CBD have proved to be resilient in the past and have the ability to bounce back from the economic crisis, says CCID chairperson and CEO of Boxwood Property Fund, Rob Kane.

The report shows that, according to the City of Cape Town’s 2018/1019 property evaluation, the value of Central City property stands at R44.124 billion, and that the total value of property investments in the Central City – recently completed, under construction, proposed or planned – is R13.83 billion.

In the SCCR 2019’s five-part section devoted to “Surviving Covid-19”, Harris concurs: “There is no denying that tough months lie ahead … but key to our recovery is re-instilling confidence in our beautiful city and province.”

Wayne Troughton, CEO of HTI Consulting, which offers data analysis for the hospitality and tourism industry, confirms recovery will be a long, winding road. “Data intelligence company, STR estimates that recovery to pre-Covid-19 levels in European cities will only be reached in 2022/2023 and South Africa is likely to follow suit. However, this should not discourage us from working towards that recovery.”

Arthur Kamp, Chief Economist at Sanlam Investments, says that as a Covid-19 vaccine is still months away, social distancing, wearing of masks, handwashing and other health and safety protocols are here to stay. Luckily, Cape Town has always been a tech-savvy city and, even before the pandemic, had initiated Fourth Industrial Revolution (4IR) solutions such as contactless services and payments, to further encourage citizens to live, play and earn in the city.

Kamp believes that “once Covid-19 passes, pent-up demand should unleash a wave of foreign visitors” to the Mother City. “But until travellers return, establishments will need to tap into new demand segments and consider reorienting their marketing strategies and product offering to the local market, including the potential for regional tourism.”

Business has its part to play as well. Earlier this year, the South African Government introduced a loan guarantee scheme, which allows businesses to take out loans to meet their operational expenses due to Covid-19. While the potential of the scheme is R200 billion, reports suggest that only around R14 billion has been taken up in credit lines thus far. As part of the city’s recovery, Prof. Brian Kantor of Investec Wealth and Investment says he hopes more businesses will demand credit from the banks, thus reinvesting into the city’s economy.

The eighth edition of the SCCR, the biggest report to date, is an indispensable guide to investors, developers and retailers seeking to invest in a dynamic city centre.

The report reflects on the bigger picture of the economy of the Central City, looking at property trends, occupancy rates of commercial and residential buildings, retail vacancies, the prominent economies of the Central City and trends in commercial and residential markets.

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For hard copies of the report contact Aziza@capetownccid.org or

Link to PDF on the website: https://bit.ly/3jzO45C

Link to ISSUU: https://bit.ly/36yRemF

Issued by Atmosphere Communications on behalf of:

Sharon Sorour-Morris, CCID Communications Manager
Cell: 082 216 0835 E-mail: Sharon@capetownccid.org

 

 ABOUT THE CCID

Established in November 2000, the Cape Town Central City Improvement District (CCID) is a non-profit company founded by local property owners. It operates with its own board of directors and liaises across both the public and private sectors, working together with each to develop, promote and manage the Cape Town Central City.

The term “city improvement district” (CID) refers to a specific geographical area, with complementary top-up services provided in addition to those rendered by the CID’s primary partners, the City of Cape Town and the South African Police Services. The CCID operates in the traditional downtown of the city and offers top-up services including Safety & Security, Urban Management and Social Development.

As a non-profit company, the CCID works alongside its primary partner, the City of Cape Town’s Department of Social Development and Early Childhood Development, to assist the CBD’s 700-strong homeless community. It has six partner NGOs including Khulisa Social Solutions, The Hope Exchange, Straatwerk, The Homestead, Ons Plek and Youth Solutions Africa, and also supports Ladles of Love, The Haven Shelter in District Six and Napier Street and U-Turn Homeless Ministries.

Today, the Cape Town CBD is considered South Africa’s most successful downtown, ideal for investment, and a world-class live, work, play and stay destination that is welcoming to all.

For more information visit capetownccid.org.