A ray of hope seems to be tilting towards the tourism industry in Nigeria as the Federal Government has reiterated its commitment to give tourism the attention needed to grow the economy.
The Minister of Information and Culture, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, who was represented by the Acting Director-General of the Nigerian Tourism Development Corporation (NTDC), Mr Paul Adalikwu at the National Association of Nigerian Travel Agencies (NANTA) Non Elective Annual General Meeting, with theme, Tourism in a Recessed Economy; the Way Forward, said the administration is not relenting on its drive to diversifying the economy, with tourism as a major beneficiary.
According to Mohammed, “this administration has concluded plans to bring back the Presidential Council on Tourism (PCT) to fully reactivate the tourism industry.
“We are hoping that under this administration, the Tourism Development Fund (TDF) will be established, we will seek money from government and through other sources, so that zero per cent interest loans can be granted to the sector so that your businesses can strive.
“Let me also mention that we expect to see full implementation of visa friendly regime under this administration.
“It is troubling and cumbersome for visitors coming to Nigeria to apply for visa and wait for weeks in order to come in. Those challenges will be over immediately the Presidential Council on Tourism is resuscitated.
“We will be working with the Federal Ministry of Interior and other relevant agencies to ensure that in line with ECOWAS roadmap on tourism, a full visa policy will be implemented to allow visitors come into Nigeria within 48 hours of applying for Nigerian visa.”