Investment Opportunities

The increasing number of tourists and the evolving profile of today's traveler demand a host of new tourism offering and infrastructure projects. A wide spectrum of investment opportunities arise out of Ghana's long-term tourism plans

These include:

  1. Tourist Accommodation

  • Multi-hotel resorts; one each for the Volta Estuary; Accra and environs; Brenu beach in the Central Region; Cape Three Points area in the Western Region; Lake Bosumtwi in Ashanti, the Volta Lake Basin incorporating Dodi Island, Dwarf Island, Digya National Park, Melinli Peninsular, Amedzofe and Wli-falls in the Volta Region.
  • Single-hotel resorts at beach sites, botanic garden sites, other lake sites etc.
  • Mountain Resort
  • Business Hotels of all classes.
  • Lodges and Inns; desirable locations include eco-tourism sites (eco-lodges in National parks), as well as other isolated tourism attraction sties and towns.
  • Motels on major tourist routes.
  • Hostels particularly on or near university campuses for dual use by tourists and campus students.
  • Camping Sites for the trans-Saharan adventure tourists with Paga, Tamale, Kintampo Falls, Kumasi, Accra. 
  1. Motel and Highway Rest Stops
  • Small Scale Rest Stop: this is a simple basic road-side stop with facilities for parking; washrooms; basic refreshment, etc.
  • Medium Scale Rest Stop: Fairly elaborate with facilities for parking, washrooms, cafeteria, shop, fuel and auto servicing.
  1. Tourist Information Shops

These independent shops are in high demand in major tourist centres particularly Accra, Kumasi, Cape Coast/Elimina and border entry points

  1. Tourist Transport Services

The under-listed services are required at major tourist locations:

  • Tourist Taxi: This is highly inadequate; it may be operated by companies licensed by Ghana Tourist Board and registered to operate from specified bases namely hotels, airport and other transport terminals.
  • Air Taxi: This is also highly inadequate but there is growing demand for it by both business and holiday visitors requiring quick visits to locations outside Accra.
  • Car Hire: The growing tourist traffic is not being matched by investments in the various categories of road transport vehicles especially tourist coaches, tourist buses, limousines, and cross-country vehicles for trekking and safaris.
  • Cruise Boats: The Volta Lake offers opportunity for the operation of various types of lake transportation for various leisure purposes such as cruise excursions or purely passenger service or for a more personalized recreation like fishing etc. 
  1. Tourist Travel Services

The growth of various types of tourism has created opportunities for investing in tourist handling services including: 

  • Tour Guiding Services: These involve setting up a company which employs a pool of tour guides for operators, conference organizers etc.
  • Tour Handler Services: This is a small-scale operation whose services may be hired by an in-coming tour operator to handle the ground logistics required by in-coming package tourists.
  • Tour Operations: This is a larger form of a tour landing outfit. In this case, the operator is required to own buses, coaches, and must have own tour packages.  It requires substantial investment in office accommodation, equipment, staff outlay, considerable experience in airline and tourist travel operation as well as a substantial insurance cover.
  • Travel Agencies: This sector is almost choked with a mushroom of outfits but an enterprising new entrant can make it.
  1. Tourism Financial Services

These services are in short supply and as the visitor traffic grows, there will be the need for more such services particularly: 

  • Credit Card Agents or Discount Houses to offer credit to pay bills at areas which do not accept credit cards.
  • Foreign Exchange Bureau: Though these are many, there is room for more.
  • Tourism Rental Services: There is a growing demand for the rental of catering, camping, picnic accessories as well as mobile telephone and toilets in Ghana, all in the service of travelers, event organizers etc. 
  1. Tourism Medical Services

There is growing demand for various types of health services for visitors notable among which are:

  • Tourism health insurance companies
  • Ambulance service for tourists including the concept of the flying doctor to service remote tourist sites. 
  1. Food and Beverage Services

The following will be required to meet the growing demand:

  • Street Taverns, Cafes and Food Counters specializing in local snacks as well as foreign snacks.
  • Pubs: these are inadequate, such as the likes of Hard Rock Café in the US.
  • Night Clubs which offer table service with floor or live shows.
  • Fast Food Restaurants: these are becoming popular and as we receive more American tourists, the demand for the likes of KFC and McDonalds become apparent,
  • Specialty Restaurants: especially African and Ghanaian cuisine restaurants which serve dinner are inadequate. 
  1. Entertainment

Accra and all major cities as well as tourist centres literally go to bed at sundown for few nightlife activities.  There is growing demand for international class:

  • Pubs
  • Discotheques
  • Night-clubs with live shows
  • Casinos
  • Amusement parks etc 
  1. Leisure & Sports

Though Ghana attracts large numbers of European, American, Asian and African tourists, they do not stay long because of lack of activity as Ghana’s tourist offer so far has been mainly sight-seeing featuring, festivals, monuments, game-viewing and nature walk. There is high demand from tourists for leisure and sporting activities to liven up their stay.

The following would greatly enhance tourists’ experiences:

  • World-class golf courses for international tournaments
  • Marinas on our Atlantic Coast, inland lakes and big rivers for sport fishing, yachting, sailing, surfing etc.
  • Theme Parks to relieve boredom.
  • Sports centres in cities offering a wide range of indoor/outdoor activities. 
  1. Shopping

Surveys indicate that most visitors to Ghana return home with most of their pocket (spending) money because the country does not offer tempting shopping opportunities despite her wealth in products.  The following are required:

  • Souvenir shops
  • Supermarkets
  • Shopping arcades
  • Shopping malls
  • Duty-free shops. 
  1. Meeting Facilities

Multipurpose convention / conference / Exhibition Centres and Halls with shopping Arcade 

  1. Education

Need for training centres, a greater use of e-learning channels and other more innovative and flexible ways of providing education and skills development in the Industry 

 BANKABLE PROJECTS

  • Marine Drive Tourism Investment Project

This is a project intended to plan and develop 241 acres of land stretching from the Christianburg Castle in Osu to the Kwame Nkrumah Mausoleum.

When completed, the facility is expected to be the hub of tourism activities in Ghana with facilities for hotels, conferences and entertainment being prime on the property. There will also be residential and other commercial properties including offices and shopping malls. The project, when completed is expected to transform the city and also create employment opportunities for many youth.

Feasibility is done and the project is to commence in 2017. 

  • Establishment of a Tourism Hospitality Institute

The project aims to establish a hospitality centre of excellence in Miotso, Prampram in the Greater Accra Region of Ghana. 

The project comprises of a hotel, a training school and a hostel. The hotel will be a 7-floor hotel with 90 rooms. A swimming pool, a gymnasium, a sauna, bar, business centres and a travel bureau are some of the facilities that will be present at the hotel.

The training school aims to offer Advanced Level Certificate Programs as well as Post-Graduate Diploma courses in hospitality management. The school will be housed in a five-story building with a student intake capacity of 260. There will be thirteen (13) classrooms, an amphitheatre, an administrative block, a library and cafeteria. 

The hostel is meant to house the students of the hospitality training school. The hostel will be a 4-story facility for both students and lectures with the capacity to house a total of 300 residents. 

The project is estimated at between US$30-US$50 million. Feasibility studies is underway.  

  •  Establishments of Tourist Rest Stops

Three categories are required:

  1. a) Small Scale Rest Stop: this is a simple basic road-side stop with facilities for parking; washrooms; basic refreshment, etc. 

  b) Medium Scale Rest Stop:   Fairly elaborate with facilities for parking, washrooms, cafeteria, shop, fuel and auto servicing. The recommended Routes:

  • Kumasi – Wa (3 small scale)
  • Accra-Abidjan (one large plus one medium and one small scale)
  • Accra-Lome (One large scale plus one small scale)
  • Accra-Kumasi-Tamale-Ouagadogou (3 large scale plus 3 medium plus a couple of small scale stops)
  • Accra-Adomi Bridge-Hohoe (One medium plus one small scale)

 

The Market

THE MARKET

Ghana's tourism industry is poised for sustained high performance in the coming decade. It is estimated that over 1,035,000 international tourist will arrive in Ghana in 2021 This estimate has however been revised as arrivals in 2011 stood at 1,080,220. Ghana is the top cultural destination in Africa, as she receives the largest number of tourists who visit Africa for cultural purposes ranking amongst the top 10 tourism destinations in Africa.

The percentage of international tourist arrivals by purpose in 2008 and 2009 are presented below.

International Arrivals by purpose of visit, 2008                                          

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International Arrivals by purpose of visit, 2009

Source: Ghana Tourist Board
The international tourist arrivals in Ghana increased from 698,069 in 2008 to 802,779 in 2009 with the receipts for these periods as US$ 1,403.1 million and US$1,615.2 million respectively. The summary of arrivals at 30 tourists sites in 2009 totaled 514,835 and in 2008, total arrivals at 33 sites was 637,550.

In 2008 the United States of America, United Kingdom, Germany, Netherlands and France were the lead countries in terms of tourist arrival outside Africa. Nigeria, Cote D'Ivoire, Togo and South Africa top the list of tourist in Africa visiting Ghana.

Ghana embarked on the Harmonized Standards for Accommodation and catering establishments in the Sub-region (ECOWAS) Standards for the classification of its hotels in 2006. The operators have been assisted in implementing these standards by the Ghana Tourist Board (GTB). This standardization by the operators resulted in total number of 20,788 rooms and 26, 057 beds in 2007 from a total of 1,432 hotels registered.

The numbers of hotels in 2008 went up by 11.28% to 1,775 in 2009 which resulted in the increase in the number of rooms and beds by 6.7% and 7.1% respectively. The hotel establishment increase to 1,795 in 2010 with the corresponding number of rooms and beds as 28,058 and 34,288.

There is increasing evidence that Ghana is the preferred conference destination in Africa as more organizations choose Ghana for their conferences. Statistics also show that other West African nationals prefer to do business in Ghana, which is evidenced by the increasing number of airlines servicing the country.

Ghana has strong cultural and historic links with both the USA and Europe. To meet the needs of these markets, the country has developed targeted programmes and events some of which include:

• The Emancipation Day is an annual celebration of the freedom gained by Africans at home and abroad, after 400 years of slavery. The celebration which begins in the last week of July and climaxing on August 1st is the anniversary of the declaration of the emancipation of slaves. It is during this time of year when Ghana consolidates to commemorate and atone for the many lives lost to the African holocaust. Ghana's celebration of the event, the first on the African continent which began in 1998, is aimed at consistently developing a unique sense of unity, co-operation and understanding amongst Africans on the continent and in the Diaspora.

 

• The Unique Culture heritage (festivals, music and dance, unique art and folklore) and rich historical heritage (world heritage monuments, Pan Africanism, Etc.,).There is a renewed interest in traditional festivals and events.
• The Hang and Paragliding Festival held in the Eastern Region of Ghana during the Easter Holidays. In 2007, the festival gained the participation of 26 international gliders, attracting 7000 people. The year 2010 saw the resuscitation of the event which equally attracted a huge number of international gliders.

• A Regatta is organized in Elmina, Central Region for fisher folk, creating an opportunity to develop domestic tourism

• The older parts of Accra will be redeveloped and beautified under the Old Accra 2015 strategy.

Investing in Ghana's Tourism Sector

Ghana’s tourism sector has seen significant investments in the past few years with projects and programs designed to increase investments, improve on existing infrastructure and also to increase the number of tourists visits, both domestic and foreign. The sector has attracted over US600 million in investments over the last 4 years and continues to be the number 5 highest foreign exchange earner for Ghana.

In February 2019, CNN International listed Ghana as one of the 19 must-visit places for tourists for the year 2019.

CURRENT DEVELOPMENTS

The Ministry of Tourism has developed a 4-year tourism development program. This program seeks to strengthen the tourism enabling environment, develop tourist sites and destinations as well as to provide support to tourism enterprises. When fully implemented, the program is expected to increase international arrivals by 300,000.

The President, H.E Nana Addo Danqua Akufo Addo cut the sod for the commencement of the marine drive project, which is the development of a 241 acre mixed use tourism enclave. Large portions of this enclave are available for private investments.

Ghana has declared 2019 as the “Year of Return”. This marks the 400 year anniversary since the first slave ship docked on US soil.  The yearlong celebration  is aimed at boosting tourist visits into the country and also to increase tourism investments.

INVESTMENT OPPORTUNITIES

  1. The marine drive enclave, which is a 241 acre development, is available for investments. Specifically, investors can look into the establishment of 4-5 star hotels, restaurants and beach resorts in the enclave.
  2. The Akwaaba Hotels project is a PPP initiative of the Ministry of Tourism to build and operate quality and affordable accommodation in tourist sites across the country.
  3. 3-5 star hotels in major cities and tourist sites are in demand.
  4. Specialized tourism companies to develop and operate such packages as adventure tourism, eco tourism, culture tourism and heritage tourism.

INVESTMENT GUARANTEES & INCENTIVES

Ghana guarantees investments against expropriation and offers free transferability of profits and dividends for foreign investors. In addition, companies in the tourism sector enjoy the following incentives:

  • A reduced corporate tax rate of 22% as against the general rate of 25%.
  • A 10% concessionary rate on imported goods for tourist establishments.
  • Import duty exemptions for plant and machinery