Togo: European hotel group expelled

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Togo has ordered Europe’s largest hotel group, Accor, to quit the country immediately or face more than 500 million CFA francs (R11m) in daily fines, according to the hotel group and court documents. This follows months of legal wrangling over the renewal of Accor’s rental agreement for its beachside Mercure Sarakawa hotel in Lomé. “The decision took effect immediately and therefore Accor has no other choice [but] to stop operations at the hotel,” the company said yesterday, referring to an eviction order given on Friday. Togo said it had ordered Accor’s expulsion “for neglecting its contractual obligations”. The government planned a tender to find a new luxury operator for the site. Sub-Saharan Africa is growing in importance for large hotel groups, which are seeking a bigger stake in the $24 billion (R257bn) market. The economy of Togo, which has resources of phosphate, iron and magnesium, is due to grow by 6 percent this year, providing potential for business travellers. – Reuters

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