Dr Ziblim Barri Iddi
Ghana has been selected to host this year’s edition of the Africa Digitisation Conference on Tourism and Trade (ADCOTT).
The conference, scheduled for August 24 to 26, at the Accra International Conference Centre (AICC), is being organized by the Chamber of Tourism Industry (CTI) in collaboration with stakeholders in the sector.
Themed, “Pushing Africa’s Tourism and Trade Frontiers through Digitisation”, the conference is expected to bring over 2,000 participants from various stakeholder groups to discuss on public policy issues relating to tourism, trade and internet in Africa.
The Deputy Minister of Tourism, Arts and Culture, Dr Ziblim Barri Iddi, speaking at the launch of the event in Accra, said government had championed the concept of digitisation as a means of building a knowledge-based economy for development.
He stressed that the success of the country’s tourism space had strengthened the currency of the economy through trade and investment.
He also indicated that the success of the “Year of Return” had boosted trade and investment in the country, hence the need for government to introduce “Beyond the Return” to sustain the initiative for national growth.
Touching on digitisation, Dr. Iddi mentioned that the government had reiterated its unflinching commitment to leverage on technology and digitisation, to strengthen and improve the delivery of service within the country’s public sector.
This, he said, had resulted in the recent migration of some public institutions including the Ports, Lands Commission, Ministry of Tourism and the Passport office onto the various digital platforms to ease business transactions.
According to him, government has, for the next four years, budgeted about US$100 million to strengthen the tourism enabling environment, develop tourist sites and support tourism enterprises.
On her part, Mrs Odelia Ntiamoah the Chief Executive Officer, CTI, said one of the major setbacks for intra-African export was Africa’s borders, adding that technology was the solution to the problem in addition to the introduction of the continental free trade.
She said it was the expectation that at the end of the conference, there would be working documents to help shape the country’s tourism and trade sector for improvement.
The Director General, National Development Planning Commission, Dr Kodjo Esseim Mensah-Abrampah, commended government for investing in the tourism sector as it gained prominence as a conduit for achieving sustainable growth and poverty reduction.