The Ghana Tourism Authority plans to close down tourism facilities in the Greater Accra region for non-payment of the 1% Tourism Levy, says deputy CEO of operations Ekow Sampson.
This move is part of a nationwide exercise to promote safety and security in the tourism industry as well as strict compliance in the payment of the Levy.
Addressing the press at the levy enforcement exercise today, the deputy CEO of operations at the Ghana Tourism Development Authority, Ekow Sampson, said the enforcement of the one percent levy and tourism quality standards is in line with the Tourism Act.
“We have already given them letters that all those who are owing should pay. They know the amount they owe so they should go and pay. Under the enforcement exercise, we will evoke the powers given to us by the Tourism Act 817 and then the tourism Legislation Instrument(LI) 2185”.
The exercise is also aimed at ensuring that hoteliers and restaurant operators provide quality services and keep the required quality standards, he added.
Kitchen in Osu-Accra was busted for defaulting a huge tune. The authority plans to undertake this exercise in batches due to the high number of hotels in the region.
“We are going to evoke the powers given under the Act and LI to make sure that, those owing us pay. And then those units which are not keeping the required quality standards have to make sure that they keep the required quality standards. The facilities under this exercise are many”, Mr. Samson said.
General operations manager at MJ Group of companies Akuffo T Ayeh was applauded by the authority for maintaining a high standard within the hotelier chain.
The Tourism Levy, stipulated in the Tourism Act 817 of 2011, is meant to provide the requisite resources for sustainable development of the tourism industry.
It is also meant to recover arrears owed by facility operators to put Ghana Tourism Authority in a better position to market and promote Ghana’s tourist resources.
The levies also go into the Tourism Development Fund. Collection of the levy began in 2012 with GH¢185, 647.00 collected that year.
Earlier this month the authority, embarked on the same exercise in the Ashanti Region to ensure that all hotels, restaurants and car rentals among others uphold high standards as Ghana marks The Year of Return.