The African Center for Economic Transformation (ACET) has identified tourism as the pathway to economical growth and structural transformation, so Ghana’s government is going to focus on it too.
In the past Rawling´s administration helped to emphasize on tourism as well as diversify Ghanaian society.Plenty of castles were restorated, private investments were made and even public memorials were established.
The following increasing number of tourists not just leads to a differentiation of work sectors, besides many jobs are created.
Nowadays,about 960 000 international visitors constitute the fourth highest source of income after exports like gold, cocoa and foreign remittances in Ghana. As the most important centers of international tourism Cape Coast, Kumasi and the regions around Accra can be named.
There are different sorts of tourism, let´s just add a few here like mass tourism, festival tourism, cultural tourism and sustainable tourism – sometimes called heritage tourism as well -, which is earning more importance lately.
Everything, which describes this form of tourism, is based on finding the balance between business and environment. The nature is protected while using environmental resources and maintaining essential ecological processes.
Moreover, the tourists will learn to respect socio–cultural authenticity of local tribes, which are likely to become host communities, and honor foreign traditions and values.
Besides creating an unforgettable experience, there are many advantages for Ghanaian population. For instance, the investments in local services and products as well as the creation of stable well – paid employment with safe work conditions.
Nevertheless, the main aim is the rise of cultural awareness with the result of the world growing together as one.
Issues and solutions
Even though the potential of growth is huge, there are some problems and issues the tourism sector is facing. For instance, insufficient investments or the lack of (well – established) infrastructure leads to a decrease of attendance rates. To prevent this, the National Tourism Development Plan (2013 – 2027) has been formulated by the administration.
This idea comprises the improvement and stabilization of the already established touristic resources in the Accra – Kumasi – Cape Coast triangle and the completion of an Accra Visitor Information Center.
Moreover, the development plan focus on the production of marketing and advertising strategies as well as dealing with environmental issues to make Ghana even more attractive for international visitors.
If these solutions are followed, the goal to reach an amount of 1 million tourists in 2020 is ready to achieve.
Story by: Elisabeth Fitzke