NESG, ministry call for more synergy between sports and tourism sectors

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THE Nigeria Economic Summit Group (NESG) and Ministry of Youths and Sports Development on Tuesday called for more synergy between the sports and tourism sectors to boost the necessary infrastructure development.

The call was made at the NESG and Ministry of Youths and Sports Development Partnership Forum for a robust deliberation and recommendations on sports development in the country.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the stakeholder’s forum tagged “Sports Industry Stakeholders Engagement Session Agenda” was held at the NESG headquarters in Lagos.

It had sports administrators, ministry officials, private and public sector officials and other sports investors in attendance.

Some contributors at the forum called for the development of indigenous sports activities, such as Argungu Festival which could be turned to fishing competition and Durban Festival, aside others.

They also called for the hosting of more international tournaments as a means of upgrading and providing more infrastructure in the country.

The forum equally called for a redesigning of sports facilities to multi-purpose facilities to allow for other programmes when sports are not ongoing in them.

There was also a call for more community-based sports activities in the local government areas to engage the youths at the grassroots.

The former Chairman, Lagos State Sports Commission (LSSC), and the Head, Sports Policy Group, Kweku Tandoh, called for more synergy between the tourism and sports industries.

He said this would allow for a symbiotic relationship to fast track infrastructure development.

Tandoh submitted that sports and tourism collaborations would engender seamless bidding for major competitions and tournaments.

“There should be a lot of synergy between sports and tourism. In fact, there should be a sports desk in the tourism industry and the same should also be replicated in the sports industry.

“It is only through tourism and sports that our youths can be well engaged. When bidding for tournaments, there should be a tourism development consideration as part of the bid.

“The bid for tournaments encompasses knowing how much the hospitality sector can also accommodate the number of those coming. This includes hotels, cinemas, and others.

“The Sydney Olympics organizers were the first to declare profit after the Games because they tagged it alongside tourism development and their nationals were well ready for it,” he said.

Tandoh noted that Australia had the highest post-event returns after the Sydney Olympics because of the appreciation of the country’s tourism agenda.

“Australia has the highest number of post-event returns to their country after the Sydney Olympics because the country was able to fuse tourism and sports.

“The government of Australia did a lot of sensitisation for the citizens on the expectations from the tournament and the high return on investment expected from the Games.

“The Australian government has been preparing the minds of the people for more than two years before the event because they saw the need to have the hospitality aspect.

“There is a need to have us, as a country, take a look at that template so as to develop our tourism sector together with sports for growth and development,” he said.

Another contributor, Deji Omotoyinbo, called for good content from various sports associations and federations so that their various competitions would receive the right sponsorships needed.

NAN

– Feb. 12, 2020 @ 09:20 GMT |

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