Traditional rulers in Northern Region asked to boost tourism

Mr James Agyenim Boateng, Deputy Minister of Tourism has urged traditional and opinion leaders in the Northern Region to devote more attention and resources to promote tourism in the area.

He said tourism is the surest avenue for the nation to derive maximum benefits to boost the economy.

Mr Agyenim Boateng was speaking on the topic: “Harnessing the Tourism Potentials in the Northern Region,” at the Ghana Policy Fair in Tamale.

The fair which was on the theme: “Empowering the people as we build a Better Ghana,” had 120 institutions and 20 Metropolitan, Municipal and District Assemblies in the region participating.

Mr Agyenim Boateng said although there are challenges hindering the promotion of tourism, the Ministry is in consultation with stakeholders to address such obstacles.

“When these challenges and gaps in the sector are addressed and if our cultural and traditional heritage is properly harnessed and developed, visitation both domestic and international into our communities will increase which in turn will boost our local economies and earn foreign exchange,”, he stressed.

Mr Agyenim Boateng said  as one of the identified growth sector’s in the National Developmental Agenda, the sector contribution to economic development is encouraging  adding, “In 2010 alone it contributed about 6.2 per cent of the Growth Domestic Product  by generating a total of 1.8 billion dollars while creating 291,000 jobs directly and indirectly”.

He said this year it was estimated that the sector would realise a whopping $2.1 billion and create direct and indirect job for about 330, 000 people.

Mr Agyenim Boateng said the prospect of the sector is bright and therefore called for stakeholders to support the development and promotion of tourists’ products.

He said the Region have many tourist centres including Mole National Park,  Gambaga Escarpment, Salaga Slave Route and Market,  Larabanga Mosque,  Nalerigu Defence Wall,  Babatu Grave and German Cemetery in Yend,  which should be enhanced through effective collaboration between government and the traditional authorities.

Source: GNA

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