Yaa Asantewaa Museum at Ejisu
GOVERNMENT, with support from the World Bank, is investing over GH¢350 million to modernise tourist attraction sites across the country, the Ministry of Tourism, Arts and Culture, has announced.
This is in line with government’s commitment to making the tourism sector a “veritable tool for economic transformation,” while ontributing to job and wealth creation for people.
Sector Minister, Awal Mohammed, made this known at a press conference in Accra yesterday.
The minister noted that the World Economic Forum Report 2021 on Tourism and Travel Development Index, ranked Ghana as the number one tourism destination in West Africa from its previous number three position, while statistics from the World Bank also indicated that two out of every ten jobs was created by the tourism sector.
“Ghana has a comparative advantage in tourism and hospitality in West Africa,” the minister emphasised.
“About 65% of all edifices used during the slave trade are located in Ghana which can be used to boost heritage tourism. Ghana also hosts the secretariat of the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA). This will enable the country enhance its position as a venue for meetings, incentives, conferences and events (MICE).”
Another advantage Ghana has over her neighbours, he added, was that it was at the centre of the world, politically stable and seen as an attractive investment destination.
“Government is, therefore, taking advantage of these to invest in the tourism sector to enable the sector be a catalyst for economic growth,” the minister added.
Some of the sites to benefit from the funding include the Pikworo Heritage and Slave Camp Project, a receptive facility with the first phase completed; the Bonwire Kente Museum; and the rehabilitation of the Yaa Asantewaa Museum at Ejisu in the Ashanti Region, expected to be completed in the first quarter of 2023.
The National Museum also underwent rehabilitation and reopened from June 13 to October 15, this year. The museum, he added, has had some 29,363 against 12,000 for the whole of 2015 before its closure for renovation.
Highlighting the impact of the tourism sector on Ghana’s economy, the minister revealed that over 3000 players within the sector has so far been trained out of an estimated 20,000 to expected to be trained by 2024.
Ghana also saw a whopping 645,047 international arrivals from January 2022 to September 2022 representing a 57 per cent growth over the same period in 2021.
The projection, he intimated, was to get 1 million international arrivals by the end of the year, thereby expecting to create 150,000 direct and indirect jobs.
BY Nii Adjei Mensahfio