Accra, April 18, GNA – Mrs Elizabeth Ofusu Adjare, Minister of Tourism, Culture and Creative Arts, says government is committed to giving the tourism sector a new phase-lift.
She said government had demonstrated this by expanding the sector’s mandate to cover culture and the creative arts, adding that the Ministry was poised to re-position Ghana’s tourism brand image in the global market while developing Ghana as the preferred tourist destination in Africa.
Mrs Adjare gave the assurance on Monday in a speech read on her behalf by Mr Humphrey A. Kumah, Director of Policy, Planning, Monitoring and Evaluation of the Ministry at the 2nd Ghana/Nigeria Tourism and Culture Showcase (GHANIGCUS) 2013 in Accra.
The event, on the theme: ‘Regional Integration: Tourism, Arts and Culture, as Tools for Socio-Economic Development,’ was patronized by several cultural troupes from both Ghana and Nigeria alongside the exhibition of some traditional products.
She said the government was committed to using tourism as an instrument for the full realization of the potential of the country’s culture and creative arts; and it was for this reason that the Ministry had been realigned to facilitate the interface between tourism, culture and the creative arts.
The Minister said to demonstrate its commitment, government last year allocated funds to the creative arts sector and had increase funding by 50 per cent in 2013 fiscal year as part of supporting Ghanaian private sector practitioners in the sector.
Mrs Adjare said GHANIGCUS 2013 marked another important milestone in Ghana-Nigeria international friendship and cultural relations.
She said it was refreshing to acknowledge the long-standing Ghana-Nigeria close relations dating back to the 1960s and there was no doubt that this had inured to the mutual benefits of our people, particularly in the areas of economic, technical and cultural co-operation.
She said Ghana had so much to offer to enrich the experiences of travelers and tourist from all walks of life globally such as the Mole National Park and Aburi Botanical Gardens.
She said the Ministry had resolved to re-package, promote and market Ghana’s diverse tourism and cultural resources and events for the domestic and international markets encouraged by the enabling environment which was conducive for the growth of the sector.
Mrs Adjare said GHANIGCUS served as a unique platform to promote the rich tourism, culture and creative arts resources of the two nations for the patronage and preservation of the people while creating opportunities for the international community and tourists to enjoy.
Mr Seyi Onafowokan, Nigeria’s High Commissioner to Ghana, commended the organizers for their foresight in making the programme a reality.
Cultural diversity was one of the ways we could form a united front for the promotion of our cultural heritage, he said.