Mr Herbert Acquaye, the President of the Ghana Hotels Association, has said Ghana’s potentials to make money through the hospitality industry could be wasted if attention was not given to the training of more professionals.
According to him, there was a massive shortage of skilled personnel to manage the hotel and hospitality industry, leading to the situation where new hotels had to poach their staff from their rivals in the industry to operate effectively.
This situation, he said, often created tension as skilled and experienced workers were often enticed away with higher remunerations from employers who had invested in them.
The Association, he said, had received numerous complaints to this effect and the situation was becoming very worrying and needed serious redress.
He attributed the shortage of such skilled personnel to the lack of interest of the youth to train and take up jobs in these sectors either due to lack of knowledge of the potential that existed in this sector or to the lack of motivation by the training institutions by way of the unattractive curriculum.
He, therefore, advocated for the expansion of education in collaboration with industry, to attract the youth and build up entrepreneurship and skill in hotel and hospitality management so that they could bridge the current gap and help in the growth of the sector.
Mr Acquaye, who was addressing a media conference to launch the second Annual National Tourism and Hospitality Exhibition, Conference and Career Fair (NaTHaFEst), slated for October 8 to 10, therefore, urged the youth to attend the event in order to secure more information and knowledge for building a career.
He said the tourism and hospitality sector had vast and untapped potentials, which offered massive opportunities for great entrepreneurship, and skills development and these should be tapped for national wealth and economic growth.
The NaThaFEst, which is a flagship programme, would bring together the critical mass of experts across board, to discuss the theme: “Tourism and Hospitality; Key to Economic Growth and Elimination of Unemployment”.