Africa: Cross River States suspends tourism levy as part of COVID-19 palliatives

Ayade, industrialization palliatives

The Government of Cross River State, Nigeria has taken the initiative of making domestic tourism more pocket-friendly – with restriction on international travel yet to be lifted – through an up-to-year-end elimination of Tourism Development Levy (TDL).

This information was made known via a press statement signed by the General Manager (Marketing) of the Cross River State Tourism Bureau, Charles Omoregha. The TDL is a payment commonly found in tourism-thriving destinations positioned to ensure sustainable tourism.

Reacting to the declaration by the State Governor, Sir Ben Ayade, that TDL be abated till end December 2020, following the assessment of the impact of the COVID-19 on Nigerians and potential tourists, the Managing Director, Cross River State Tourism Bureau, Mr Utsu John Atsu, expressed delight that Cross River State has been able to overtly show Nigerian tourists that the state truly cares about their feelings as they currently experience economic slow-down, naira fall, and international travels restrictions as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Mr Atsu said: “Tourists can now get greater value for their spend as hotels are renovated, nature sites have been rejuvenated and locals have been eager to see visitors.”

Cross River is blessed with huge rain forest that is home to most of Africa’s endangered animal species, the Cross River Gorillas, and a vegetation diversity that includes famous medicinal plants such as the anti-sickling plant Eremosastax polysperma and the anti-retroviral plant Ancestocladus korupensis and several more.

The Cross River State Tourism Bureau is currently on a drive to ensure that all accommodation establishments in the state comply to its post-COVID-19 re-opening guidelines which was prepared in conjunction with the South-south zone of FTAN (Federation of Tourism Associations of Nigeria).

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