Minister engages stakeholders to propel Ghana’s tourism industry toward remarkable growth


The Minister of Tourism, Arts and Culture, Dr. Ibrahim Mohammed Awal, convened a significant breakfast meeting with key industry stakeholders at the W.E.B. Du Bois Centre in Accra. The meeting, held on August 30, aimed to assess the current state of Ghana’s burgeoning tourism industry and strategize its future trajectory.

Attended by both public and private sector stakeholders, including representatives from the tourism and hospitality trade unions under the Ghana Tourism Federation, airlines, event organisers and vendors, the event provided an invaluable platform for a comprehensive evaluation of the industry’s progress.

Dr. Ibrahim Mohammed Awal, asserted that tourism can no longer remain on the fringes of national development. “Tourism can no longer be at the periphery of national development,” he stressed.

Dr. Ibrahim Mohammed Awal, Min. Tourism, Arts & Culture

The Ghanaian government, he indicated is resolute in its determination to elevate tourism to the forefront and position it as the leading contributor to the country’s GDP in the foreseeable future. Dr. Awal revealed the ministry’s ambitious target of achieving $6 billion in revenue by 2026, drawing from a projected 2 million international arrivals, while simultaneously generating an impressive 150,000 job opportunities annually within the sector.

Beyond attracting international tourists, Dr. Awal emphasized the critical importance of nurturing a thriving domestic tourism sector. He revealed that Ghanaian travelers presently expend approximately $8 million on vacations abroad, notably in destinations like Dubai and Europe. Dr. Awal passionately advocated for a paradigm shift, whereby more emphasis is placed on domestic tourism. He called for a transformation in mindsets to encourage more Ghanaians to explore their own country, thereby redirecting a portion of the funds spent abroad back into the local economy.

To attain this, the Minister urged stakeholders to raise standards across sites, attractions, and hospitality establishments. He also stressed the need for businesses within the industry to adopt strategies that transcend the lifespan of their owners. Dr. Awal underlined the importance of implementing succession plans and cultivating core values that would ensure the enduring success of their ventures.

Akwasi Agyeman, the CEO of the Ghana Tourism Authority (GTA), provided an in-depth presentation on the current state of Ghana’s tourism industry. Agyeman highlighted the sector as a potent force capable of alleviating the nation’s economic challenges. “Tourism is being spoken of as one of the industries that can drive us out of our economic challenges,” he emphasised.

Akwasi Agyeman, CEO – Ghana Tourism Authority

He outlined the GTA’s strategic initiatives, including enhanced marketing strategies, rigorous quality assurance, research and monitoring efforts and a robust digitization drive. These initiatives collectively pave the way for a prosperous future for Ghana’s tourism sector.

In unveiling the GTA’s forward-looking vision, Agyeman detailed forthcoming plans to elevate the industry. These initiatives encompass improving product quality, promoting heritage tourism, diversifying the tourism product portfolio, enhancing the slave routes experience, bolstering Accra’s nightlife to stimulate the night economy, and elevating overall service delivery. Agyeman also affirmed the GTA’s commitment to strengthening collaboration with stakeholders, engaging in consultative marketing campaigns to bolster the nation’s image, and augmenting the impact of the Public Private Partnership Forum (PPPF).

A section of industry stakeholders at the Breakfast Meeting

The event concluded with an open forum, fostering dynamic interactions between industry practitioners and leaders. Attendees delved into critical topics such as e-visa implementation, human resources development, elevating customer service standards, amplifying the engagement of young individuals in public discourse about tourism, constructing a new convention centre, rehabilitating the National Theatre, and enhancing the soft skills of frontline industry workers.

The breakfast meeting stands as a pivotal moment in Ghana’s journey to solidify its position as a thriving and inclusive global tourism destination. The insights shared and connections forged during this gathering are poised to shape the industry’s trajectory in the coming years.

Story by: Samuel Obeng Appah


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