Africa: Tourism to contribute 1.6 trillion naira to Lagos GDP in next 5years-Ambode
The Lagos State Governor, Akinwunmi Ambode has said the state is taking meaningful step to develop a robust and sustainable tourism materplan that will drive the economy of the state and make it more viable.
This is just as the governor disclosed that the sector contributed about 800 billion naira to the Gross Domestic Product (GDP), of the state in 2017.
Speaking at the Lagos Tourism Summit with the theme “Destination Lagos: Towards a Sustainable Tourism-Driven Economy”, the governor stated that tourism contribution to the state’s GDP is expected to double by 2023.
He said the state has committed a lot of resources to creating an enduring architecture for the business of tourism to thrive noting that tourism does not stand on its own. He added it is the infrastructure supporting the sector that allows it to thrive, that is why there has been so much upbeat about putting enduring infrastructure in place in the state.
According to the governor, the tourism masterplan recently commissioned by the state is expected to show the roadmap to be taken in the next couple of decades in order to make tourism a major sector of Lagos.
Ambode stated that the masterplan is one of the legacies the state is determined to bequeath to Lagosians and the coming generations.
He pointed out that the masterplan is focused on key sectors of culture and heritage, film, art and entertainment, business tourism, nature and adventure, medical and wellness, beach and leisure.
He said: “The tourism summit further demonstrates our commitment to find an alternative platform that can enrich our state and also propel us to be continually prosperous. We are very proud of our culture and heritage. It has become very clear and evident that there is no other concentration of the black race that is larger than Nigeria and most especially Lagos. And So the Lagos tourism master plan which is the ultimate end product of this summit is premised in the context of this analogy.
“So as a government we are very conscious of this fact and that is why we have been using infrastructure, security, stability and partnering with all stakeholders who are fundamental ingredients for tourism development. We have channelled a lot of resource to creating an enduring architecture for the business of tourism to thrive.
“Tourism does not stand on its own, it is the infrastructure supporting it that actually allows it to thrive and that is why there has been so much upbeat about putting the infrastructure in place. Our plans, concept and execution are very deliberate and well thought out to make a highly populated mage city state, culturally attractive and artistically functional
Also at the event, former President of Ghana, Mr John Dramani Mahama, who gave the keynote address, said there is need for greater collaboration to make Lagos and Accra the tourism hub of Africa.
According to the former President tourism could be a major source of revenue for government if the masterplan being put forward by the state is comprehensive.
He said the tourism masterplan of the should not only focus on what new tourism facilities could be developed but how to ensure that the state is made attractive to tourists, improved and well developed quality medical services, enhanced transportation services, high speed mobile data services and guarantee of security of any visitor to Lagos state.
Mahama added that the sector cannot be fully developed as a key driver of the economy without the development and creation of solid infrastructure.
He said: “We cannot develop tourism to the level that it can become a key driver of our economy without development and solid infrastructure. Thankfully Lagos is in preparation for the launch of the Lagos State Tourism masterplan, has begun accurately and expanding critical infrastructure including transportation, roads and of course the recent reclamation that is ongoing.
“The tourism plan must therefore not focus only on what new tourism facilities could be developed but how to ensure that the state is made attractive to tourists, improved and well developed quality medical services, enhanced transportation services, high speed mobile data services and of course guarantee security of any visitor to Lagos state. The indicators that attract tourism in any location include urbanization and rising income and many locations in Africa and Lagos being a key example are experiencing such level of rapid growth and urbanization.”
He said tourism is a fast services sector that needs to combine with an industrial revolution to position economies in Africa for the needed growth in order to create more jobs for the young population.
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