Stakeholders urge FG to create jobs, alleviate poverty through tourism

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Sally Mbanefo, Director General of the Nigerian Tourism Development Corporation with Kushal Dutta, Managing Director of Jumia Travel Nigeria in Abuja

 

Some stakeholders in the tourism industry on Tuesday said the sector was capable of creating millions of jobs, alleviate poverty, increase foreign exchange earnings and boost the nation’s revenue.

The stakeholders made this disclosure in Abuja at the 2015 Afro tourism expo, with the theme: “Intra-Africa Transport Infrastructure: The Panacea for Africa`s Tourism Development.”

According to them, the Federal Government should also look inward to tap and invest in the huge investment opportunities and potential in the industry.

Mr Adama Bah, the Guest Lecturer, said that the tourism industry was big and has numerous investment opportunities that could be used to grow the economy.

“The industry is fast growing globally and it is gaining private, public and government attention and participation to boost revenue,” he said.

He urged the government to develop the sector because it could be a better alternative for the diversification of the economy.

Bah said that the tourism industry cannot improve without necessary infrastructure put in place.

He appealed to the government at all levels to put adequate infrastructure in place to attract investors and tourists.

In his speech, Mr Kushal Dutta, the Managing Director, JOVAGO, a hotel booking company, appealed to the government to create enabling environment for investors.

Dutta said that stakeholders have being doing their best to promote and support the development of the industry in the county.

He said that the role government needed to play was to make adequate provisions to improve on the nation`s tourism facilities.

“If the necessary facilities are there, it would be easier for investors to market domestic tourism products to the world, this will bring about high influx of tourists and investors into the country,” he said.

Earlier, Mr Saleh Rabo, the Vice President, National Association of Nigeria Travel Agencies (NANTA), said that adequate infrastructure was the key to a sustainable tourism development.

Rabo expressed dissatisfaction at the Federal Government’s decision not to have a tourism ministry, adding that it was necessary for the government to engage experts before making decision.

He said that the sector was capable of creating millions of jobs, alleviate poverty, increase foreign exchange earnings and boost the nation`s revenue.

In a remark, the Chief organiser, Mr Joesef Karim, thanked the stakeholders and assured them of sustainable tourism development.

– Courtesy NAN

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