November 2019

Sierra Leone’s Ministry of Tourism and Cultural Affairs has embarked on a nationwide assessment of natural, historic and cultural sites.

Ministry of Tourism and Cultural Affairs embarks on an assessment of natural, historic and cultural sites

The process which started on Friday, November 16, 2019, saw five teams comprising officials of the Ministry of Tourism and Cultural Affairs, the National Tourist Board, Monuments and Relics Commission and other stakeholders visiting various sites in the country.

 

Funded by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) the exercise was done to assess the existing status of touristic and potential touristic sites principally natural and heritage assets.

A good number of natural and heritage sites in Sierra Leone present a barrage of conservation challenges that must be arrested to save them from further deterioration and degradation.

Some of the sites visited include the slave castle, Bunce Island, Tasso, and Banana Island, River No 2 and Lakka beaches, Tacugama Chimpanzee Sanctuary, Tiwai Island, Outamba Kilimi National Park, Old Fourah Bay College and others.

According to the Director of Tourism who doubles as the Head of this activity, Mohamed Jalloh, the exercise would aid the Ministry and her development partners take the necessary action to safeguard them from the effects of climate change, erosion, environmental impact and other conditions that were inimical to their continued existence.

Through this assessment, the Ministry would tackle management challenges while equally taking action to do a proper restoration.

Sierra Leone’s cultural and natural assets have suffered long years of neglect arising in part from the non-prioritization of the tourism industry by previous administrations.

Minister of Tourism and Cultural Affairs, Memunatu Pratt says they were doing everything humanly possible to transform the economic status of Sierra Leone through tourism.

President Julius Maada Bio also promised to diversify the country’s economy through tourism.

One way of promoting tourism, not least heritage, and cultural tourism is to assess the status of the sites and restore or conserve where necessary.

The exercise which lasted for three or four days produced a compelling outcome which if implemented, would bolster local tourism while still promoting inbound tourism.

This national exercise was coordinated by the Director of Tourism.

 

The Minister of Tourism and Cultural Affairs as a panelist in the First Regional Congress on Women’s Empowerment in the Tourism Sector in Accra, Ghana.

The Minister of Tourism and Cultural Affairs as a panelist in the First Regional Congress on Women’s Empowerment in the Tourism Sector in Accra, Ghana.

The Congress aims to discuss strategies and actions to advance gender equality and women’s empowerment in tourism.

 

 

UNWTO/WORLD BANK AND THE MINISTRY OF TOURISM AND CULTURE ON WOMEN’S ENTREPRENEURSHIP IN TOURISM-FREETOWN FORUM.

UNWTO/WORLD BANK AND THE MINISTRY OF TOURISM AND CULTURE ON WOMEN’S ENTREPRENEURSHIP IN TOURISM-FREETOWN FORUM.

“Celebrating women’s empowerment through tourism entrepreneurship”

THE OBJECTIVE OF THE WORKSHOP:

To disseminate the findings of the UNWTO Global Report on Women Enterprise Survey in Ghana and in Sierra Leon, and to discuss and identify key policy recommendations to promote women’s empowerment through tourism entrepreneurship.

Note that Women’s contribution to the economy of Sierra Leone is well below its fullest potential. In must sectors of the economy women entrepreneurs are are disadvantaged and face considerable challenges in growing their businesses.
In line with UN SDG 5:

to achieve gender equality and empower    women and girls. it is important to raise awareness of these issues and start to find sustainable solutions. Therefore, tourism is the correct and smart entry point for action.

Tourism is a priority sector for the Government of Sierra Leone. Tourism has been shown globally to provide more opportunities for women’s entrepreneurship and advancement than other sectors of the economy.

THE EXPECTED OUTCOME OF THE WORKSHOP:

1. Greater awareness and understanding of the constraints facing women’s economic empowerment and gender mainstream in the tourism sector.

2. Increase interest in women’s entrepreneurship within the tourism sector in Sierra Leone and the sub region.

3. Stakeholder commitment towards action to promote women in tourism in Sierra Leone.

 

Visa-On-Arrival to Sierra Leone

As part of government’s commitment to promote tourism and attract foreign direct investment, the Government of Sierra Leone wishes to inform the general public, airline operators, Sierra Leone Embassies and Missions overseas, International Air Transport Association (IATA), international partners and other government bodies that with effect from Thursday 5th September 2019, a new Visa on Arrival policy has been rolled-out for persons from the following countries or blocs:

  • United Kingdom Citizens
  • European Union Citizens
  • United States Citizens
  • Citizens of Commonwealth member countries
  • Citizens of Gulf Cooperation Council member countries (UAE, Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Qatar, Kuwait, and Oman)
  • Citizens of the BRICS Countries (Brazil, Russia, India, China, and South Africa)
  • Citizens of the following countries:
    • Lebanon
    • Iran
    • Cambodia
    • Vietnam
    • Singapore
    • Indonesia
    • Thailand
    • Turkey
    • Japan
    • South Korea
    • Norway
    • Israel
    • Bolivia
    • East Timor
    • Macau
    • Samoa
    • Tuvalu

Below are the visa fees for ease of reference:

  • ECOWAS nationals – Visa-free
  • Non-Ecowas AU nationals – USD 25.00
  • All other countries – USD 80.00

Citizens of ECOWAS states and all other countries with which Sierra Leone has visa-free agreements will continue to enjoy visa-free access.

Citizens of countries not listed above are required to visit the nearest Sierra Leone Embassy or Mission abroad to secure visas prior to visiting Sierra Leone. All persons coming to Sierra Leone for the purpose other than tourism, visit or business needs to apply for a visa before undertaken such travel. We wish to reassure all potential visitors of a continuing hassle-free visa processing experience.

 

Exhibiting Sierra Leone at the biggest World Travel Market in London

Sierra Leone is set to participate in one of the World’s biggest gathering of the tourism sector, the World Travel Market, London.

World Travel Market London introduces global travel buyers to countries, the biggest destinations and brands in the world. WTM London prides itself on being the hub of travel ideas.

They aim to give sector players, the global travel trade insight into how the industry will look in the next five years, share innovations, and create endless business opportunities over the course of three days.

Sierra Leone was an attractive destination for tourists from across the world but that changed following a decade of civil strife.

The Sierra Leone People’s Party (SLPP) led Government of President Julius Maada Bio campaigned to diversify the economy through tourism by improving the policy and legal environment, developing infrastructure, rehabilitating and developing historic and cultural sites, developing skills in tourism and promoting, marketing and improving the international image of Sierra Leone.

Hence the participation in such Exhibitions.

The advantages of participating in these events are manifold.
It gives Sierra Leone an opportunity to engage and connect with her target audience face-to-face. Participating in an event where over 51,000 international travel professionals, from more than 38 sectors of the travel industry are present is no mean feat. It provides an enviable opportunity to meet, network, negotiate and conduct business with key decision-makers in the travel industry.

Sierra Leone’s Ministry of Tourism and Cultural Affairs, the National Tourist Board and Monuments and Relics Commission would use this exhibition to position the country as a must-visit destination. Her presence would ensure that it is seen by the people that matter and offer an opportunity to truly stand out as a brand in a place where the travel industry congregates.

By participating in such events, the nation grows her exposure and position her brand as a destination that worth travellers’ attention – there’s no better place than the hub of travel ideas to present that brand.

The competitive edge of showcasing the ecotourism and adventure tourism potentials of this great nation cannot be overemphasized. Our brand presence at the show is significant but we also get an insight into what other businesses and countries are doing.

With the newly launched Visa-on-Arrival facility, the country needs to launch that new product to Tour Operators. WTM London gives the perfect platform to launch any new products people may have in front of a large engaged audience. Create your hype.

The event which runs from the 4th-6th November 2019 takes place at ExCel Exhibition Centre in London. Around 300,000 new business connections are made each year at these events where over 3,000 journalists from around the world are present.