The South African government is considering a $52m (£42.5m) sponsorship deal with Premier League side Tottenham Hotspurs, the Daily Maverick new site reports quoting official documents.
The deal is meant to promote South Africa as a travel destination but there are also concerns about the country subsidising a wealthy football club, the publication reports.
Details of the three-year deal are on the “verge of being finalised” through the marketing arm SA Tourism.
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President Cyril Ramaphosa is expected to announce the deal during his State of the Nation Address on 10 February, the report adds, but there are no comments yet from the presidency or the tourism minister.
A tourism expert quoted was critical of the deal, saying the return on investment was “ludicrous”.
Since 2018, the Rwandan government has had a controversial sponsorship deal worth more than £30m ($42m), which involves a “Visit Rwanda” logo displayed on Arsenal shirt sleeves.