The Ghana Hotels Association has welcomed the call by the Tourism Minister for the hotels to reduce their high cost of charges.

But it’s concern about the high levies and charges imposed by government on members which has increased its cost of operations

Tourism Minister, Dr. Ibrahim Mohammed Awal in a recent meeting said the high hotel charges are impeding growth of local tourism.

But President of the Hotels Association, Dr. Edward Ackah-Nyamikeh Junior Junior tells Joy Business both government and hotel operators must dialogue to find a common ground.

According to him, the high rate of hotel charges are also due to a combination of government policies and hotel practices.

“The Minister’s call is in the right direction to the extent that he situated it within the context of government and hotel players dialoguing to help reduce the cost of hotel rates. You see for me the Minister’s call is also an admission that the perceived high hotel rates is a factor of government policies and hotel practices and that is why he is calling for that dialogue.”

“Indeed with regards to government policies, you know we’ve been talking about the high tax build up in our operations, talking about 2.5% NHIL, 2.5% GETFUND and then now 1% Covid-19 levy and then on top of all this we add the 12.5% VAT and 1% Tourism Development Fund”, he pointed out.

He also said the regulatory charges paid by its members are also exorbitant, saying “where we pay levies for operations and then you have high emoluments in terms of staff”.

The hospitality industry was one of the hardest hit during the emergence of covid-19, recording negative growth rate throughout the year 2020.

It also contracted by 10.7% in the first quarter of 2021.

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