By Chinelo Obogo
The AKWAABA African Travel Market, organizer of the largest travel and tourism exhibition in West Africa, said the 18th edition of the event will place more emphasis on medical tourism.
They said that during announcing the date of the 2022 edition of the annual event to be held at the Convention Center of Eko Hotels, Lagos, from October 31 to November 1, 2022.
The organizer, Mr. Ikechi Uko, said he decided to pay special attention to medical tourism and health insurance in the 2022 edition of the event due to the growing importance of medical tourism in Africa. .
“Recently, the United Nations World Tourism Organization, UNWTO, had a joint program with the World Health Organization, WHO, to streamline their strategies and, according to UNWTO Secretary General Zurab Pololikashvili, COVID-19 has shown that any crisis that threatens the health, safety and security of people, communities and the environment is also a risk to tourism itself.
“Furthermore, the Nigerian Minister of Information and Culture, Lai Mohammed, who oversees tourism, said Nigerians spent more than $1 billion on medical tourism in 2021. This highlights the importance of this type of tourism and the need to look at the role of medical travel. health in the growth of tourism and travel. Hospitals and medical tourism organizations from different countries will be invited to this year’s event.
“Leisure and business travel were the main source of travel to and from Nigeria and West Africa. The growth of medical tourism in recent years has demanded greater focus on this tourism sector. There will be a B2B session on medical tourism and health insurance on November 1, as well as a panel discussion with experts from host countries and departure destinations. This 18th Akwaaba will host the 5th edition of the Africa Travel and Tourism Conference and the 2nd edition of the Africa Travel 100 Women Awards,” he said.