Ghana will hold the ninth Hang and Paragliding Festival at Atibie-Kwahu in the Eastern Region of the country from April 18-22.
Elizabeth Ofosu-Adjare, minister of Tourism, Culture and Creative Arts, said on Thursday the government was trying to use the festival to inculcate the spirit of domestic tourism in Ghanaians.
She said as Ghana prepared to move into the next phase of its development agenda, it stood to reason that tourism held the key to providing the alternatives.
"Our aim right now is not to make money or profit out of domestic tourism. The government is poised to making sure those economies around where we do these activities do well," she told a press conference in Accra.
"For example, when we did paragliding, all the hotels in the Kwahu area were fully booked. What it means is that government is promoting businesses for people in the hotel industry. So even though the ministry didn't get profit in its pocket, the community benefited and Ghana benefited and businesses did well. So that is our aim of organizing the paragliding," she said.
Paragliding, an international sport, was introduced in Ghana in 2005 to promote domestic tourism.
It is organized yearly to coincide with the Easter celebrations in Kwahu and has been hosted by the District Assembly since its inception.
The Ghana paragliding festival has evolved into an opportunity for participants to not only experience the beautiful culture and landscapes of the country, but also as a chance for participating pilots and passengers to represent the goodwill of the flying community by raising donations to aid local community development efforts.
The ninth edition of the festival is expected to attract both Ghanaians and foreigners alike for more than three days of spectacular aerial fun, ceremony and music.
This year's event has a special addition, which is an exhibition of tourist attractions in the Kwahu area to help market and encourage tours and travels to Kwahu.
Fifteen of the world's best pilots from USA, France, Japan, Belgium and South Africa are expected to take part in the festival. More than 300 people are expected to fly this year.
Globally, tourism, culture and the creative arts are widely recognized as vehicles for socio-economic development.
In Ghana, this sector is recognized as the fourth foreign exchange earner, contributing significantly to job creation, income generation, poverty reduction and national cohesion.