Industrial and Commercial Bank of China (ICBC) and South African Standard Bank on Wednesday launched “I Go South Africa” program in partnership with South African Tourism in Johannesburg.
The initiative will capitalize on the growing appetite among Chinese travellers to visit South Africa by offering discounts and special offers from South African merchants, said Lincoln Mali, Standard Bank’s group head of card and emerging payments across Africa in personal and business banking.
At the same time the campaign of “I go China” will attract the Standard Bank cardholders to enjoy the tourist and shopping experience in China.
“ICBC is the biggest bank in the world, with approximately 139 million credit cards … Standard Bank is the biggest bank in Africa, making this a perfect partnership,” said Mali.
“Tourism from China has increased drastically over the last few years, and we expect more than 100,000 Chinese tourists in South Africa next year, with an average transaction value of 18,500 rand each. This spells good news for the South African economy and for Standard Bank’s thousands of merchants,” Mali said.
Wang Dufu, General Manager of the ICBC banking card department, said both campaigns increase the partnership and economic cooperation of China and South Africa.
Welcoming the “I Go South Africa” initiative, South Africa’s Tourism Minister Tokozile Xasa said: “This partnership represents a dynamic meeting of our two countries’ banking and business sectors, with the close involvement of the public sector too.”
“Tourism growth from China will help us in our ongoing drive to create new, sustainable jobs in the tourism value chain,” she said. Enditem