The Ghana Tourism Authority (GTA) has called on stakeholders and practitioners in the industry to have their facilities licensed under Regulation 2393 of the new Tourism Legislative Instrument.
They are also to endeavour to sustain the cultural and historic values and distinct features of which both local and international tourists were motivated to travel and see.
The Director of Research, Monitoring and Evaluation with the GTA, Mr. Spencer Doku, said this at the orientation and training workshop for operators from Western, Central and the Western North Regions of Ghana.
He stressed the urgent need for all tourist sites to be registered by the end of the year to avoid any conflict with the laws: “Your failure will cause you a prison sentence or penalty and even both in some cases.
“The Authority was also streamlining and given thresholds for attendants or tourists to be escorted or carried on walkways in some attraction sites under the carrying capacity concept,” he added.
Mr. Akwasi Agyeman, Chief Executive Officer of the Authority, said the reformation processes started in 2017 to develop administrative guidelines for all sectors of the industry.
Mr. Alex Boakye, Director, Standards and Quality Assurance at the Authority, said there was a need for proper maintenance of all facilities, adding that sites must keep to standards and grading as distinctive features to increase attraction and grow income. He explained that sites with superior appeal in terms of historic, culture and scientific appeal qualified for a grade status.
Mr. George Ansere, Western Regional Manager of Ghana Tourism Authority, called for improved access road to tourism facilities, decent places of convenience, and noted how collaboration and research was being carried to add up to the region’s tourism wealth.
Dr. Eudora Hagan, Vice Dean, Faculty of Applied Arts, Takoradi Technical University was happy that concentration had shifted from hotels and restaurants to sites and scenes which created lasting images in the minds of visitors. She prayed for such periodic engagement that would ensure the benefits of industry practitioners and the country. GNA