The economic impact of the Aardklop National Arts Festival in Potchefstroom
Van Heerden, Adriette
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It is the purpose of this study to determine the economic benefits of events to the host community from both a supply and demand side. In the context of event tourism, economic impact is defined as the net economic change in a host community that results from spending attributed to a cultural event. The purpose of an economic impact analysis is to measure the economic benefits that accrue to a community (Fayos-Sola, 1997:242). This concerns the enhancement of the host population's way of life, economy and environment. In order for a country or region to benefit from an event, leakages need to be determined and minimised. Saayman (2007:107) has divided leakages into three categories, namely: - Imports; - Savings ratio and - Taxes and subsidies. In order to determine the size of the leakages, as well as the demand for an Arts Festival, questionnaires were handed out during the Aardklop National Arts Festival. A systematic random sampling method was used in order to determine the size of the sample and the survey was conducted from the 24th September – 28th September 2002. The methodology consisted of two different types of questionnaires, namely (1) a visitor questionnaire, and (2) a business survey. Four hundred (400) questionnaires (N=400) were distributed between the tourists, of which 353 were useful and 50 questionnaires were completed by relevant businesses. The questionnaire covered aspects such as the average spending of different age groups and the amount of leakages that occur during the festival. The total spending during the festival was calculated at R39 million. The spending in Potchefstroom after the first round of leakages (sales of imported goods) is then R24.3 million. After the second round of leakages (suppliers in Potchefstroom buy their goods and services from suppliers outside Potchefstroom), the total that stays in Potchefstroom is only R18.3 million. The study pointed out that more involvement from both the businesses and the community can minimise the leakages and thus enhance the economic impact of the Festival in Potchefstroom. Instead of using suppliers in Gauteng or any other province, businesses can start to use Potchefstroom's resources, therefore minimising leakages so that the community can benefit more from the event.