The South African government on Tuesday launched a 1.2-billion-rand (79.4-million-U.S.-dollar) fund to support the tourism sector amid the ravaging COVID-19 pandemic.

The Tourism Equity Fund will be used in particular to help facilitate “the participation of black entrants, women and persons with disabilities,” South African President Cyril Ramaphosa said in the virtual launch of the fund.

Noting that the capital-intensive nature of the tourism industry prevents many black-owned tourism enterprises from growing, Ramaphosa said that by providing access to finance, the fund “intends to address this challenge.”

Meanwhile, according to Small Business Development Minister Khumbudzo Ntshavheni, an enterprise in the tourism sector could receive funding of up to 15 million rands (1 million dollars).