The maiden Africa Tourism Day will be held virtually on the 26th of Novemver 2020. The Africa Tourism Day is a newly created annual event which will be hosted rotationally amongst African countries or group of countries. The Africa Tourism Day will also feature a number of scintillating side events, including Photo Contest and Tree-Planting exercise which commenced on the 1st of November and culminate on the 24th of November 2020.
According to the newest UNWTO World Tourism Barometer, international arrivals plunged 81% in July and 79% in August, traditionally the two busiest months of the year and the peak of the Northern Hemisphere summer season. The drop until August represents 700 million fewer arrivals compared to the same period in 2019 and translates into a loss of US$ 730 billion in export revenues from international tourism. This is more than eight times the loss experienced on the back of the 2009 global economic and financial crisis.
Message by the Director General of NIHOTOUR on World Tourism Day 2020
Tourism is one of the most transformative socio-economic endeavours in the world today. The industry is responsible for one in ten jobs in the world. Tourism is a leading Export Service and a major source of foreign exchange earning tool for nations’ international Balance of Payment.
The Federal Government of Nigeria has over the years sought to diversify the economy by developing a sustainable tourism industry, in partnership with the private sector. This is one of the main reasons why NIHOTOUR was established in 1987 as the flagship Hospitality and Tourism training institute in Nigeria and West Africa.
The Covid-19 crisis has disproportionately affected tourism, a sector that accounts for millions of jobs around the globe. While no one can say with certainty when tourism will recover, people are starting to dream again of getaways whether closer to home or to remote destinations. As more and more people go online to search where and when they can travel, accelerating the digitalization of the tourism sector will be key to adapting to the new tourism reality.
That is why the United Nations World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) and Google have partnered for an online Acceleration Program for UNWTO Member States' tourism ministers, top travel associations and tourism boards to further develop innovation and digital transformation skills.
The Nigeria Immigration Service (NIS) has assured that the Service will treat all travelers fairly, under the new visa regime. The Service Spokesperson of NIS, Mr Sunday James, recently disclosed this in Abuja on Friday September 11, 2020. The PRO also promised that the NIS will respect the fundamental rights of every traveler to the country. James said that the service would continue to practice citizens’ diplomacy with the new visa regime.
Experts on visa issues drawn from member states of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS), met in Abuja on the deployment of the regional visa otherwise known as ECOVISA.
The ECOVISA, according to the ECOWAS Commission, is billed to facilitate the seamless movement of citizens of ECOWAS member states in the region.
The commission added that the meeting which held virtually, among other issues, afforded the experts the opportunity to present and discuss additional, as well as proposed security features of the ECO document and the necessary accompanying measures for the implementation of the decision of the Heads of State and Government of ECOWAS on the matter.
The enormous toll of COVID-19 on international tourism has now become clear, with World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) data showing the cost up to May was already three times that of the 2009 Global Economic Crisis. As the situation continues to evolve, the United Nations specialized agency has provided the first comprehensive insight into the impact of the pandemic, both in tourist numbers and lost revenues, ahead of the upcoming release of up-to-date information on travel restrictions worldwide.