Home BUSINESS Tourism Authority woos Turkish travellers to Ghana

Tourism Authority woos Turkish travellers to Ghana

The Ghana Tourism Authority (GTA) is aggressively promoting the country’s tourism potential to Turkish travellers with the hope that the Turkish will take advantage of the stable socio-political environment to explore its rich heritage.

As part of the effort, officials of the authority held bilateral discussions with their counterparts from the Turkish Ministry of Culture and

Tourism at Izmir to explore ways the two could cooperate to develop the sector.

The GTA, which regulates the country’s tourism industry, is one of the participants of the ongoing 84th Izmir International Fair in the Turkish commercial city of Izmir.

Their participation was at the invitation of the Ghana Export Promotion Authority (GEPA), which is leading a delegation of 12 Ghanaian businesses to exhibit at the fair.

The Manager of Special Events at the authority, Mr Benjamin Kwame Anane-Nisah, told the Daily Graphic that the decision to promote Ghana’s tourism potential to Turkey was in line with a 15-year National Tourism Plan launched recently.

The plan aims at scaling up the number of tourist arrivals to the country from the current one million to eight million by 2027.

As part of the plan, the Tourism Authority has decided to liaise with the GEPA to virtually export the country’s potential to create interest and rake in more revenues.

“Tourism is also export although not physical. It is similar to exporting of yams because somebody may come into your country, stay for a while, spend some money and inject something into the economy,” Mr Anane-Nisah said.

Mr Anane-Nisah said Ghana needed to move beyond its established and traditional tourism markets of the United Kingdom, Germany, France, Norway and others to new markets such as Turkey.

He said although Turkey, home to over 74 million people, and Ghana do not have any historical linkages, it was worth cultivating that country as a tourism market.

However, he said the foundation stone was being laid as some Ghanaian youth were going to Turkey to study on government scholarship and Ghana was also witnessing Turkish investment, though modest but was beginning to climb into the construction and hospitality sub-sector.

He said Ghana had a fairly good reputation based on the legacy of some of Ghana’s footballers, includuing Stephen Appiah, who played for the Turkish side, Fenerbahce Football Club.

Advice to Ghana

The Director of Culture and Tourism at Izmir, Mr Abdulaziz Ediz, said Turkey had a fast developing tourism sector and that they were ready to share experiences with Ghana.

He said the sector accounted for over 20 per cent of Turkey’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP).
On an annual basis, Mr Ediz said Izmir, which was the third largest city in Turkey, earned US$35 billion from 40 million tourists who visited the city.

He said “Ghana can begin promoting its own tourism on infrastructure, especially accommodation and service facilities. Accessibility to the country in general and tourism sites must be improved,” he added.


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