“A smart people’s port will be a driving force for the socio-economic development of the city and our province,” says Port Elizabeth port manager for TNPA, Rajesh Dana. “We cannot create and operate a smart port in a vacuum. It needs to be integrated with smart cities and its people.”
As part of the waterfront development for the city of Port Elizabeth, the role the evolved port will play is key. It will connect its theatre of operations with the city’s tourism and leisure vision. “We are ideally located to showcase the rich culture of South Africa to international tourists,” says Dana. “We already have approximately 24 cruise vessels arriving annually. And as we become a ‘cleaner’, less industrial port, I am sure this figure will rise.”
People’s Port Festival
It is the blend of port operations, the marine economy, local and international tourism and leisure pursuits available in the city, that will be showcased and be available for enjoyment at the TNPA’s inaugural People’s Port Festival.
The Port of Port Elizabeth is opening its doors to the public from 25-26 March 2017.
Says Dana: “Ports exist to serve economies and people together with communities lie at the very heart of these economies.
“In receiving international flagged vessels, our port is a melting pot of cultures and nationalities, and it’s a focal point in so many ways for so many, and we want people to experience this theatre of port operations. It’s our motivation for the People’s Port Festival.”
The Port of Port Elizabeth will showcase some of the technology, machinery, and ocean experiences to be had, and will offer tours to areas usually closed to the public. Access is free to all, and there will be entertainment and experiences for all ages.
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