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Business News of Tuesday, 12 May 2015

Source: Daily Guide

Ghana missing at INDABA 2015

Many countries have taken advantage of South Africa’s biggest travel and tourism exhibition – INDABA 2015 to acquire stands and market their tourism potentials to the outside world, but Ghana is nowhere to be found at the event.

About 27 African countries are showcasing their brands and new product offerings to the developed world at the international exhibition.

The countries include Angola, Benin, Botswana, Burundi, the Comoros, Congo Brazaville, the DRC, Egypt, Ethiopia, Kenya, Lesotho, Madagascar, Mauritius, Mozambique, Namibia and Nigeria.

Others are Niger, Rwanda, Senegal, the Seychelles, Swaziland, Tanzania, Uganda, Zambia and Zimbabwe.

Despite the recent xenophobic attacks in some communities in South Africa, that country still boasts of a lot of tourism arrivals and receipts, and that is the reason why the aforementioned countries are keen on attracting their share of the tourism market of the continent through INDABA 2015.

South African Tourism CEO, Thulani Nzima and that country’s Tourism Minister, Derek Hanekom vehemently condemned the attacks and attributed them to some poor aggrieved people. However, the situation is now under control.

In Government’s 2015 Budget, Minister of Finance, Seth Terkper said the Government was doing everything possible to position Ghana’s tourism sector in the global market and promote Ghana as the preferred tourist destination in Africa, but it is unknown why INDABA was ignored.

International arrivals, which was 993,600 in 2013 was projected to reach 1,093,000 by the end of 2014.

This year, a total of 1,202,200 tourists are expected to arrive in Ghana and is projected to create 392,000 jobs. It is unclear what has transpired in the first quarter to ensure a successful plan for this year.

Minister of Tourism, Culture and Creative Arts, Elizabeth Ofosu-Adjare in January this year declared 2015 as a Year of Tourism with emphasis on Domestic Tourism, but all she could do was to appeal for the organisation of attractive, affordable tour packages to attract patronage.

Also, she bemoaned the description of Ghana as a high-cost destination and admonished operators to be driven not just by profit motives.

Plans to market Ghana’s tourism pale in comparison to that of South Africa.

For the implementation of the above programmes and activities, an amount of Ghc33,296,543.00 has been allocated. Out of this, Ghc4,727,359.00 is GoG and Ghc8,569,184.00 is IGF.