Chief Executive Officer of Ghana Tourism Authority (GTA), Akwasi Agyeman has revealed that Ghana is gearing up to introduce an electronic visa (e-Visa) system in the first quarter of 2024 to deal with challenges faced by tourists and investors visiting Ghana.
He was speaking in an interview on JoyNews’ PM Express Business Edition on November 23, 2023.
Mr Agyeman stated that the initiative is a collaboration between the tourism ministry, Foreign Affairs Ministry and vendors in the travel and tourism sector, and there is substantial progress towards its realization.
He noted that there is huge competition for investors and tourists in Africa, and that is why it has become critical to position Ghana as the preferred destination for both.
The initiative is a key component of a broader program named “Easing the Diaspora Pathway,” aimed at streamlining the travel experience for those visiting Ghana.
The GTA CEO also highlighted the importance of facilitating tourism and framing it as an integral aspect of the nation’s development agenda.
As a precursor to the Electronic Visa platform, the government is implementing a ‘Visa-On-Arrival initiative’ from December 1 to January 15, 2024. During this period, airlines are mandated to allow passengers who choose this option to fly to Accra without insisting on a prior visa issued by the Government of Ghana from the country of departure.
Mr Agyeman noted that this Visa-On-Arrival initiative is an initial step, with plans underway for a subsequent “Free Visa Initiative” for individuals traveling to Ghana. While visitors will still be required to pay for the visa at the airport, Agyeman clarified that the system aims to be self-sustaining, avoiding reliance on the consolidated fund for sector initiatives.
To ensure seamless implementation, the Transport Ministry has engaged with airlines, directing them to comply with the Visa-On-Arrival directive. Mr Agyeman underscored the importance of preventing any potential embarrassment for travelers at the airport, highlighting ongoing engagements with airlines to integrate the government’s Visa-On-Arrival system into their operations.