Tourism Ministry, GTA expects 150,000 visitors for ‘December in GH’ events

Ibrahim Mohammed Awal?fit=500%2C309&ssl=1 Minister of Tourism Arts and Culture, Ibrahim Mohammed Awal

Tue, 26 Oct 2021 Source: thebftonline.com

The Ministry of Tourism, Arts and Culture (MoTAC) and its implementing agency, the Ghana Tourism Authority (GTA), expect some 150,000 visitors into the country as part of activities lined up to observe 'December in GH' events.

'December in GH' has since 2019 become a key month on the country's tourism calendar, contributing to Ghana's tourism growth. The initiative constitutes an array of high-profile tourism-oriented events which bring thousands of tourists into the country from across the globe.

Despite the climax of the pandemic last year, 'December in GH' was successful with events such as Afrochella, polo games by the Polo Beach Club, among others.

Announcing some preliminary events which have been approved for the initiative, Tourism Minister Dr Ibrahim Mohammed Awal said the sector had made significant strides despite the effects of the pandemic.

"As of now, the tourism sector has achieved about 70 per cent target in terms of measures to mitigate the effects of the pandemic on tourism businesses. As it stands, Ghana is attracting more tourists in West Africa due to the country's vaccination drive, and we are expecting some 150,000 visitors for 'December in GH'," he said.

The country, Dr Awal noted, is on course to attract about 600,000 tourist arrivals in 2021, being a 100 per cent increase for the 300,000 obtained in 2020, adding, "Government's ambitions for the sector is to generate about 250,000 domestic and international jobs within the sector by the end of the year, leveraging significantly on 'December in GH'.

"The last quarter of this year is very critical for us in attracting these projected numbers into the country," he said

Outlining activities for the events, CEO of GTA, Akwasi Agyeman highlighted Afrochella, Polo Beach Club, Rhythms on the Runway, Taste of Ghana, Kwanzaa, Diaspora Transition, Takoradi Festival, A centenary of the demise of Yaa Asantewaa at Kumasi, and GUBA awards, as the preliminary events which have been approved for the activities.

These events, Mr Agyeman said, would be observed under strict COVID-19 protocols where vaccination cards would only be accepted from guests and observance of all approved protocols as part of the means to participate in the events.

"By November 1, we'll have the full calendar of events. The Ministry and GTA are still vetting most of the events which have been received, and by the end of this month, the full list of events will be announced, and contactless ticketing would highly be utilised to prevent personal contacts" Mr Agyeman said.

He said participants from the diaspora must have a negative PCR test taken within 72 hours, pre-purchase of COVID-19 test from Frontier Health Service before embarkation; payment on that platform, and go through a COVID-19 test upon arrival at the airport in Ghana.

Source: thebftonline.com
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