Google Maps, Street View Will Boost Tourism in Nigeria – Lai Mohammed

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Alhaji Lai Mohammed

 

The Minister of Information and Culture, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, has
stressed the need to leverage on technology, particularly digital
mapping, to boost tourism in Nigeria.

According ti a statement signed by his SA Segun Adeyemi, the Minister stated this in Abuja on Friday at the launch of the Economic Value of Geospatial Services in Nigeria.

“As we look to make Nigeria a major tourism destination in Africa,
technologies such as Google Maps, but more specifically Street View
put forward by Google, will become increasingly important on that
front. We hope to see even more value as increasing numbers of people
use tools like Google Street View to explore Nigeria,” he said.

Alhaji Mohammed said geospatial technology will not only benefit local
users but that it is also a veritable tool that can also be incredibly
powerful in drawing tourists to the country.

“We know this because we’ve seen the impact that StreetView has had in
destinations around Africa. In South Africa, for instance, people can
take a guided tour of Robben Island, the prison which held Nelson
Mandela and many other South African freedom fighters during
apartheid.

“In Kenya, meanwhile, users can take virtual treks through some of the
country’s most famous game reserves. And in Tanzania, people can get
up close and personal with the chimpanzees of Gombe National Park,
thanks to a partnership between Google and the Jane Goodall
foundation.

“These are all examples of how giving people a taste of a place they
have not visited is a powerful incentive to get them to experience the
real thing. We look forward to doing the same in Nigeria, as we show
off our own natural and cultural heritage,” he said.

The Minister said the interconnectedness between technology and
tourism will assist in bringing in foreign capital as well as the
growth of other industries including hospitality, retail and
transport.

“It also promotes and encourages patronage of local agriculture and
creative industries as well as manufactured products by operators in
the tourism industry. That’s especially important as we look to cement
our place as Africa’s largest economy,” he said.

Alhaji Mohammed, who commended the laudable initiative by Google, said
the ability to simply search for a location and get real-time
directions there has made the lives of the people much more
convenient.

“I’d like to say that events such as this one offer a powerful
reminder of how impactful partnerships between government and private
companies like Google can be – to grow our local businesses and
strengthen our economy. If digital mapping services have made such a
difference in the last five years, we can only imagine what the next
five will bring. We look forward to growing this fruitful relationship
in the coming years and seeing what Google comes up with next,” he
said.

 

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