Danny Jordaan insists that 'negative perceptions' of South Africa are more likely to prevent tourists from coming to the country for the 2010 Soccer World Cup.
World Cup bid committee chief executive Jordaan spoke at a Business Against Crime (BAC) trustees' breakfast on Friday morning in Johannesburg.
He felt that perceptions were the result of crime and also because South Africa is the first African country to host the event.
"We need to address these perceptions in a strategic manner both inside and outside the country," he said.
"The host cities need to formulate a marketing and media document that would give correct and reliable information with regards to the crime in the respective areas."
He revealed that several European countries raised security concerns and wanted to speak to security authorities and SA Tourism to gain reliable information about the country.
"There is interest in Europe to ensure the soccer spectacular becomes a success in Africa," he said.
"It is therefore a challenge for to us maintain this interest and supply the most reliable and relevant information. We must develop a comprehensive message that our country is safe and desirable."
Jordaan added that security and crime were the most important issues the bid committee had to face while lobbying for the country to host the 2010 soccer tournament.
"As the major issue in the eyes of tourists, we need to be seen to be allocating almost the same amount towards safety and security in South Africa," he said.
"But through the support of the government, society and business, the country triumphed. There is a need now, more than ever, to vigorously confront and address crime."