Pretoria – A massive economic boost is expected in Pretoria, South Africa, as the Enlightened Christian Gathering Church opens for the first time in 2019 with a massive International Visitors Program slated for Saturday.
Thousands of people are expected to jet in to the country from all over the world, bringing in millions in foreign currency, and inducing activity across all sectors of the economy.
The church, which receives nearly a million tourists per year, provides livelihood to hundreds of thousands of homes in Pretoria, with hawkers, vendors, security guards, car cleaners and other self employed people enjoying a customer base of wealthy Christians.
Tourism experts have stated in the past that over 20% of ECG Visitors use commercial accommodation, bringing in millions of rand in revenue for Pretoria based businesses. While an additional 60% use lodges and local transport.
Local taxi bosses were beginning to express frustration with the postponement of services by the church.
“When the church is open on Monday, Friday and Sundays, business is good for us. We make thousands of rands and make more money from ECG in that one week than we do in three months of normal driving.”, Thato Mulalo, a local taxi driver told ECG News.
The church currently spends over a million rands at the Pretoria Showgrounds, bringing in much needed revenue for the city.
ECG is estimated to bring in nearly R20 billion rands into the SA economy through its services.
The services resume this Saturday, with an International Visitors Program.