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Regional News of Sunday, 28 March 2004

Source: GNA

Investors urged to establish tourist facilities in V/R

Ho, March 28, GNA - Mr Kwasi Owusu-Yeboa, Volta Regional Minister on Saturday invited investors to venture into the provision of foreign exchange bureaux, information centres, travel and tour agencies and nightclubs among others, in the region, which is fast establishing itself in the country "as the leading name as far as tourism is concerned." He urged the Ghana Tourist Board (GTB) to embark on an aggressive campaign to promote the region's diverse tourism attractions through advertisements in the media.

Mr Owusu-Yeboa was delivering the keynote address at the sixth Volta Region Tourism Awards night under the theme, "Sustainable Tourism- The Key to Poverty Reduction" at which 17 individuals, communities and institutions including Mr Timothy Dzamboe of the Daily Graphic were honoured. He said new and interesting attractions were being discovered on an almost regular basis including the Crocodile Island near Gamenu and archaeological exploration at Dzogbefeme alongside "substantial growth in the number of hotels of varying sizes in the region in recent times."

Mr Owusu-Yeboa commended the American Peace Corps for their immense contributions towards the development of community based eco-tourism projects, which constituted one of the strongest points of tourism in the region. He urged parties to land disputes at eco-tourism sites to exercise maximum restraint and reach consensus in settling their differences as tourism thrived on peace.

Miss Beatrice Appiah-Kusi, Director, Human Resource Development of the GTB, urged the award winners to aspire to improve on the standards they had achieved. She urged operators in the industry to help GTB to implement the ECOWAS Standards for the classification of hotels to keep Ghana and the 14 member ECOWAS States competitive in the regional and global tourism competition.

Mr Charles Obeng, Acting Volta Regional Manager of the GTB urged hotels in the region to introduce local cuisines on their menu. He said the crave for foreign foods was dangerous to the country and that the hotel industry must be the platform for popularising local foods for both foreigners and citizens. The main sponsors of the event were Ghana Breweries Limited, MANET and Unilever, The Trust Bank, Metro TV, NOVOTEC (BOSCH) Ltd. and Design and Display Publicity (DDP)

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