The Ghana Tourism Authority hosted its first-ever two-day Presidential Summit on Tourism at the Peduase Lodge in Aburi.
The summit was set to be a game-changer for Ghana’s tourism industry as it brought together diverse stakeholders to discuss innovative approaches.
With a focus on national development, job creation, and sustainable tourism practices, the summit aimed to reshape the future of the tourism sector. Themed “Rethinking Tourism for Economic Growth and Job Creation,” the event attracted tourism operators, government officials, NGOs, academics, community leaders, and the media.
The summit served as a platform to explore novel approaches to prioritizing sustainability and community involvement. The event sought to synergize the nation’s tourism, arts, and cultural assets by facilitating stakeholder dialogue and collaboration.
On the second day of the event, participants engaged in critical discussions, fostering a deep understanding of how tourism can contribute to the country’s development.
Mark Okraku-Mantey, Deputy Minister of Tourism, Arts, and Culture, who was present at the event, spoke on the topic “Building Synergy: Tourism, Arts, and Culture.”
“Tourism, arts, and culture are deeply interconnected, and their combined impact on our economy cannot be understated,” he said.
He mentioned that the Ministry of Tourism, Arts, and Culture was focused on policy leadership and was working on a cultural policy to protect tourism and provide economic growth. He added that the ministry had already developed the Ghana Creative Arts Law and was working on refurbishing some Ghanaian tourist sites.
“Tourism, as a key driver of economic growth, has the potential to revolutionize our nation. The revenue generated from tourism activities creates employment opportunities, stimulates business growth, and contributes significantly to our GDP,” he added.
Also present at the event was Chief Justice Akosua Frema Osei-Opare, who spoke on the topic, Harnessing Cultural Assets for Inclusive Tourism Growth. She emphasized the vital role of tourism in Ghana’s progress and called for collaborative efforts to preserve the country’s precious tourist sites. Recognizing the value of these sites, she urged active stakeholders to invest in education to achieve sustainable growth in the tourism sector.
“Tourism, as we all know, plays a pivotal role in fostering economic development, generating employment opportunities, and promoting cross-cultural understanding.”
She encouraged the preservation of tourist sites in Ghana and advised active stakeholders to invest in preservation to achieve tourism growth.
“Harnessing our cultural assets for inclusive tourism growth requires us all to recognize the immense value of our cultural heritage and safeguard it for future generations. We have a duty to protect and preserve our historical sites, monuments, and artifacts. By investing in their restoration and conservation, we can create sustainable tourism products that will attract visitors from around the globe.”
Panel discussions by industry players, creatives, stakeholders, and musicians engaged the audience with different perspectives and discussions on generating ideas and strategies for sustainable and equitable tourism, fostering enhanced collaboration and networking within the industry, and formulating an action plan to implement sustainable tourism practices.
The Presidential Summit on Tourism represented a pivotal moment for Ghana’s tourism industry. The summit aimed to create a more responsible and equitable sector that benefits all stakeholders by encouraging critical thinking and fostering collaborations. A sustainable future for Ghana’s tourism industry can be realized through the collective efforts of tourism leaders, policymakers, and communities.