The National Institute for Hospitality and Tourism is to design a tourism master plan and policy for the Federal Capital Territory (FCT).
This follows an agreement signed by the two government agencies yesterday.
Speaking after signing the agreement on behalf of the FCT administration yesterday, minister of state for the FCT, Chief Olajumoke Akinjide said it was part of efforts towards enhancing tourism development in FCT.
According to her, the master plan which represents a planning approach, including defining goals, aims and objectives, a research phase, strategy formulation and development, articulation of a physical plan and implementation would be presented to President Goodluck Jonathan and the Federal Executive Committee (FEC) for approval.
Akinjide assured on the feasibility of the document, saying it had been put together by the institute, and added that “the institute is required to come up with a tourism policy, master plan for the FCT and are going to help us build capacity for the period of 72 weeks”.
She further disclosed that the administration had recently acquired three parks in the territory for conversion into a sculpture, music and international horticulture parks, where people from across the globe could view art works, listen to all kinds of music and peculiar horticulture and foods from other countries would be showcased.
On his part, the director-general of the institute, Alhaji Mungali Dantata, who led a team from the institute, said the primary goal of the FCT Tourism Master Plan was to enhance the role of Abuja as a conference tourism destination and optimise the economic benefits of tourism throughout the territory.
“On a wider level, the objective of the master plan is to provide guidelines to the FCTA officials, FCT tourism stakeholders and residents of the city that will enable Abuja’s transformation into an international tourism destination in a predictable and coordinated manner,” he explained.
According to the director-general, it was necessary for the FCT to formulate its own tourism policy as each state and region in the country has its own peculiar potentials which needed to be addressed to complement the national policy which covers the whole country.
“In order for the FCT to attract foreign direct investment into its tourism industry, there is the need for a comprehensive tourism master plan and policy in line with what obtains in other parts of the world,” he added.