Tema GTA re-ignites efforts to boost domestic tourism

Ghana Tourism Authority2.png The Ghana Tourism Authority

Fri, 1 Oct 2021 Source: GNA

Mr Charles Buabi, Tema Regional Director of the Ghana Tourism Authority (GTA), has said the Authority would continue to re-ignite and intensify efforts at boosting domestic tourism since it is essential in advancing the country’s social-economic fortunes.

He said domestic and regional tourism drives present the only opportunity to revolutionize and increase visitor numbers at attractions in the Tema Region and the country as a whole in spite of the nosedive in domestic tourism statistics as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.

He said as part of strategies to recover from the pandemic and to reinvigorate domestic tourism with the current enthusiasm of Ghanaians to visit tourist sites, it was the view of the authority that two-thirds of the Ghanaian population must be vaccinated.

Mr Buabin was addressing the media as part of activities marking the 2021 commemoration of World Tourism Day at “the Place – Sakumono Titanic Beach” on the theme: “Tourism for Inclusive Growth.

It seeks to essentially highlight a participatory approach to creating and sharing tourism wealth for poverty reduction, decency in living standards, and livelihood security.

World Tourism Day, celebrated each year on September 27, is the global observance day fostering awareness of tourism’s social, culture, political and economic value and the contribution that the sector can make towards reaching the Sustainable Development Goals.

“We have begun on an educational drive with our operators, to get all their employees to get vaccinated and to further ensure that all COVID-19 protocols including the continuous use of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE), washing of hands amongst others are still adhered to and thoroughly monitored for compliance,” he said.

He said there will come a time where the GTA would make it mandatory for patrons of hospitality facilities to show proof of vaccination before they patronize such venues as done in other countries to ensure compliance to the protocols.

The Regional Director indicated that as part of strategies to revamp the sector, the government through the Ministry of Tourism, Arts and Culture had secured funding from the World Bank for the Ghanaian destination development, marketing, and promotion as well as institutional capacity strengthening.

He said the World Bank Tourism Development Project (WBTDP), as a policy intervention, was designed to support the growth and development of Ghana’s Tourism, Arts, and Culture sector by focusing on destination planning, site upgrades, enterprises support, project management, and institutional strengthening.

According to him, the Ghanaian destination was expected to see improvement in the capitalization of tourism, small and medium enterprises and products development amongst others.

Mr Buabin, said the industry required a re-set and overhaul and demands innovation, technology application, and concerted efforts to turn it around.

He added that policy interventions such as digitization of products and services, sites upgrade, promotion and marketing drives, and aggressive revitalization of domestic and regional tourism was needed to revive the sector.

Mr Reginald Reindorf Malm, Principal Standards and Quality Assurance Officer of the GTA, Tema Region, said the Authority was adding value to already existing tourism sites in the Tema Region and the country as a whole to encourage Ghanaians to patronize domestic tourism.

He said the Authority was in talks with service providers particularly hoteliers to give discounted prices of hotel rooms to persons who patronize domestic tourist sites.

Source: GNA
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