The Director-General, Nigeria Tourism Development Corporation (NTDC), Mr Folorunsho Coker, has called for more funding and social intervention to boost the tourism sector in the country.
Coker said in Abuja that funding had a major impact on the performance of the agency considering its function to promote tourism.
According to him, injecting more funds into tourism sector will make it thrive more, increase influx of tourists, and generate more revenue for both the government and private investors.
He decried the poor budgetary allocation to the sector which he said had affected its development and reduce job opportunities.
The NTDC boss emphasised the need for an intervention fund in the nation’s tourism industry arguing that “tourism is the largest employer of labour”.
According to him, the corporation has a role as a marketing agency of the tourism sector and needed funding to market its products.
The NTDC boss who said that partnering with the private sector was important, however, noted that private sector funding was not forthcoming due to present economic challenges.
Coker also noted that funding has a major impact on the performance of the agency considering its function to promote tourism.
He decried ythe delayed release of funds to the corporation which he described as a factor hindering the performance of the corporation.
“There is a difference between money appropriated in the budget and actual releases.
“It is the actual releases that determines how much can be spent, we have to prioritise our spending based on what we have at hand,” he said.
Coker further said that an enabling environment was relevant in tourism development and advocated for a legal framework.
He, however, pledged the commitment of the corporation to partner with stakeholders to move tourism to an enviable height.