ACCRA, Ghana– 150,000 tourist arrivals between now and December this year are expected in Ghana, the Minister of Tourism, Arts and Culture, Dr. Ibrahim Mohammed Awal, has announced.
Dr. Awal spoke during a press briefing organised by the Ghana Tourism Authority (GTA) to update the media on plans being made to host this year’s ‘December In Gh’ (December In Ghana), as part of activities to celebrate ‘Beyond the Return’.
GTA launched ‘December In Gh’ as a new tourism product to drive people to Ghana which is increasingly becoming the destination for Christmas and New Year celebrations due to the government’s measures to make the country safe and recover from the impacts of the Covid-19 Pandemic.
“Ghana is getting more tourist arrivals in recent days. I think it is because of the drastic measures the government has put in place,” he said.
The Minister said the National Gallery Museum, which had been closed for eight years, would be opened to visitors on December 28.
Further, he appealed to the media to support the country in its tourism drive, saying “tourism cannot grow without the support of the media”.
The Chief Executive Officer of the GTA, Mr. Akwasi Agyeman, emphasized that they would ensure ‘December In Gh’ is hosted in adherence to Covid-19 protocols.
“We are working under the auspices of the Tourism Ministry to ensure protocols are strictly observed,” Mr. Agyeman stressed.
He added that visitors who arrive in the country will take the PCR test for COVID-19, and participants to show vaccination cards before entering event grounds.
GTA will display the full list of the events by December 1, 2020, on its website other key designated websites.
In March this year, Dr. Ibrahim Mohammed Awal when newly appointed expressed his desire to generate $5 billion from the tourism industry by December 2022.
Intending to ensure one million domestic tourists each year, the Minister hopes to get the country’s tourism back on track while driving investments into the creative arts and culture sub-sectors.
Ghana’s tourism, until the advent of the COVID-19 pandemic, had been projected to rise significantly for both arrivals and receipts following the huge success of the “Year of Return” initiative.
Figures from the 2019 Tourism Report by the Ghana Tourism Authority indicated that the country earned over $3,312 billion in tourism receipts.