CRAG urges GTA to get all tourism establishments registered to pay levy

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Ghana Tourism Authority (GTA)
Ghana Tourism Authority (GTA)

Mr Seth Yeboah Ocran, President, Car Rental Association of Ghana (CRAG), has urged the Ghana Tourism Authority (GTA) to ensure all tourism establishments are registered to contribute to the Tourism Development Fund (TDF).

He said the GTA must create an even field for all tourism establishments to operate to grow the sector.

“All tourism establishments must be registered and charged accordingly. That is the only way to grow the fund and use it for its intended purpose.”

In an interview with that Ghana News Agency, Mr Ocran noted that, because the regulator was weak in enforcing the rules, most establishments had taken advantage of that and did not want to be associated with any associations within the sector.

“The GTA is, therefore, creating a disadvantage to companies registered with them. Customers will not come to me if I am registered with tourism levy and VAT and charging extra monies. They will go to someone who is not registered and has not added the charges.”

Speaking about the TDF, he said the idea behind the establishment of the Fund was that of a Public Private Partnerships (PPP), however, its management and disbursement had been left in the hands of the public sector.

Mr Ocran said there was the need for an immediate amendment of the Act to include the private sector on the Board that managed the Fund.

“In the spirit of PPP, the idea of the Fund was brilliant, but some portions of the Act that established it must be amended to provide room for the private sector to be well represented on the Board that manages its use and disbursement. There must be a Co-chairmanship position allocated to the private sector.”

According to the President of CRAG, amending it would create a wider scope for its operations.
“In collaboration with the private sector, we can expand the scope of how much money can be raised for the Fund and how much will go into tourism activities such as research work, data collection.”

He said a guide was being developed by the PPP steering committee, inaugurated by the sector Minister last year, and expressed hope that would address the concern and grow the Fund.
Earlier, the TDF Administrator told the GNA that contributions to the Fund were not made by tourism establishments but patrons of the establishments.

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