Monday, July 15

We are yet to explore tourism’s full potential – GTA CEO

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The Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the Ghana Tourism Authority (GTA), Akwasi Agyemang, has said Ghana has not yet fully tapped into its tourism potential.

He acknowledged Ghana’s significant strides in tourism but emphasised that there is more room for growth.

Mr Agyemang noted that international arrivals reached approximately 1.1 million by the end of 2019 but declined due to COVID-19 in 2020. However, by 2023, the industry had surpassed pre-pandemic levels.

The CEO also pointed out the growth in domestic tourism, noting that in 2017, about 500,000 people engaged in local tourism within Ghana, and by 2023, this number had increased to 1.4 million, indicating a notable rise in domestic tourist activity.

Speaking on the JoyNews AM show on Tuesday, the GTA CEO stated that “if you take a sector like cruise tourism, time was when maybe once in every two years you have a cruise ship land in any of our ports, either Tema or Takoradi, but now last year alone we had almost 10,000 arrivals through cruise.

These are all data that is available, and that shows us that the work that we are doing in terms of marketing the destination, in terms of licensing and regulating the industry, is bearing fruits. But I feel that the potential is still out there, and there are a lot of things that we can do to get it to its full potential.”

He noted that tourism is a cross-sectoral industry, and what the industry is doing is impacted strongly by other sectors like roads to tourist sites and sanitation.

“People are beginning to understand that whatever happens, you cannot say this is health; this is sanitation. These are roads. It has an impact on tourism,” he said.