Interested in Tourism?

Emmanuel Nii Adjah Badger

+233 302 665125

ebadger@gipcghana.com

 

Gideon Seyram Tsike

+233 302 665125

gtsike@gipcghana.com

Investing in Ghana's Tourism Sector

SECTOR OVERVIEW

The tourism industry in Ghana has experienced a dramatic turnaround since 1996.In 2011this phenomenal growth further deepened. The number of tourism visits from 2006 to 2011 has shown a steady increase with an average growth of 17%. From 497,129 international visitors in 2006, more than 1,000,000 people visited Ghana in 2011.

In 2010, the United Nation World Tourism Organization annual compilation singled out Ghana along three other Sub Saharan Africa countries for outperforming the world average for the year. Ghana, by its total of 931,224 arrivals and receipts of US$1,875.0 million recorded in 2010, achieved a growth of 16%.

The country receives the largest number of tourists visiting Africa for cultural purposes and ranked amongst the top 10 African tourism destinations in 2010.

Ghana is currently serviced by most major airlines including KLM Royal Dutch Airlines, Ethiopian Airlines, Air Namibia, Emirates, Lufthansa, Delta Airlines, Virgin Atlantic, Brussels Air, Turkish Airlines and British Airways.

Tourism is the most promising sector of the national economy, ranking as the third highest foreign exchange earner until September 2007. The sector was ranked as the fourth foreign exchange earner for Ghana, raking in more than $1.4 million in 2008 and contributing 6.2 per cent GDP. The Tourism sector's growth rate at an average of 17% is one of the fastest growing sectors with huge potentials of poverty reduction and wealth creation for the people. In 2011, the sector received US$2.18 million in receipts; contributed 6.9 per cent to GPD and employed over 300,000 Ghanaians directly and indirectly across the country.

Ghana stands a great advantage of being the best tourism destination in Africa because of its unique slave forts and history, cultural diversity, natural environment and political stability among other things. The WTTC projected that in 2021 international tourist arrival to Ghana will be over 1,035,000.

Table 1 below provides a quick insight into Ghana's growing potential in this sector.

Table 1

Tourist arrivals in Ghana

YEAR

Arrivals

Receipts(US$ Millions)

2006

497,129

986.80

2007

586,612

1,172

2008

698,069

1,403.1

2009

802,779

1,615.2

2010

931,224

1,875.0

2011

1,080,220

2,179.0

 

sce1  sec2

                         Arrivals                                                                                         Receipts

Source Ghana Tourist Board

Ghana is keen to promote non-mass tourism, focusing on sustainable tourism. Some areas for consideration are:-
a) Culture tourism - festivals, events, rural tourism
b) Heritage tourism with focus on the slave route
c) Recreational tourism – beaches, water sports, theme parks and golf
d) Adventure tourism - rainforest eco-tourism, game parks, white-water rafting, cruise line etc
e) Events tourism with focus on conferences, Meetings

Resources and Facilities

Ghana has numerous game and wildlife parks including the Mole National Park located in the Northern Region. It offers visitors the unique experience of "foot (trekking) safaris". The Owabi Wildlife Sanctuary is a natural habitat for many species of wildlife, as well as for a number of migratory birds, located 16kms west of Kumasi.

 

Other wildlife reserves are the Shai Hills Game Reserve, Digya National Park, Kogyae District Nature Reserve Bui National Park and the Ankasa Game Reserve and Nini Suhien National Park.

 

There are numerous colourful traditional festivals and durbars. One such festival is the Dipo (Puberty Rites) by the Krobos. Aboakyir (Deer hunting) is by the people of Winneba. Homowo (Harvest/Thanksgiving) is a festival of "over coming hunger" by the Gas. Damba is celebrated originally to mark the birth of the Prophet Mohammed but also has a traditional character; this is celebrated in the north of Ghana. Hogbetsotso is by the Anlos tribe and signifies their migration into Ghana. The Adae (Festival of Purifying of the Ashantis' ancestral stools) is an equally great festival with much pomp and pageantry.

 

Tourism in Ghana