The Government of India is coming out with a new tourism policy to strengthen and build capacity of tourism sector to provide better services and facilities to the tourists visiting the country said, Rakesh Kumar Verma, Additional Secretary, Ministry of Tourism, Government of India at the inaugural session of the ‘Tourism Week’ at the India Pavilion in EXPO2020 Dubai.
Elaborating on the tourism policy, Verma added, “The policy will create five missions including National Green Tourism Mission, to mainstream sustainability in tourism sector; National Digital Tourism Mission, to digitalize the sector; Sectoral Mission on skill development, to ensure that the country has the best trained and qualified manpower to maintain high standards of service; National Mission on Destination Management, to focus on ensuring synergy and coordination amongst public and private stakeholders and National Mission on Tourism MSMEs to support and facilitate the start-ups, micro, small and medium enterprises.”
He further said, “In order to kickstart inbound travel, India has offered 5 lakh free e-tourist visas and India is now opening up international travel in a calibrated manner. All our airports, railways and road transport have taken adequate measures for public safety and so have our tour operators and hospitality operators. As a result, India saw a significant spurt in domestic tourism in past few months.”
“India is celebrating and commemorating 75 years of Independence as ‘Azadi Ka Amrit Mahotsav’ showcasing progressive India and the glorious history of its people, culture and achievements. Ministry of Tourism in partnership with Tourism stakeholders will launch various incentives and initiatives to encourage and facilitate your visit to India. India will host G-20 summit next year and many meetings across various tracks will be held in India in various cities,” Verma added.
Speaking on the occasion, Dr Aman Puri, Consul General of India in Dubai and Deputy Commissioner-General for India at Expo 2020 Dubai said, “Travel & Tourism is a crucial sector to Indian economy, contributor to employment and GDP. By 2030, we are expecting this sector to contribute upwards of USD 500 Billion to our GDP. India-UAE tourism is one of the busiest sectors in the world fuelled by the 3.3 million strong and vibrant Indian diasporas in the UAE. While UAE to India sees 50,000 tourists a year, UAE received over 6 million Indian tourists. Expo 2020 Dubai is the first Expo in the MEASA (Middle East, Africa and South Asia) region, and we are proud to announce that Indian visitors are largest in terms of visitors by nationality at the Expo.”
Puri added, “We would like to see this global platform enabling and catalysing the institutional linkages so that the two nations can grow together and support each other’s socio-economic transformation. We would like to urge the Dubai Tourism Board to continue sharing India’s story and continue marketing various aspects of India’s tourism sector such as Sustainable, Spiritual, MICE to name a few.”
Hoor Al Khaja, Associate Vice President, International Operations – Department of Economy and Tourism of Dubai said, “Dubai is home to over 200 different nationalities and Indian nationals form a very important part of the cities multinational fabric accounting for the largest proportion of the expatriate population in the UAE. We are pleased to see that India’s iconic pavilion continues to be one of the most visited pavilions and a major attraction amongst visitors.”
The inaugural session was also attended virtually by leading voices in the tourism and hospitality sector like Rajeev Kohli, Joint Managing Director, Creative Travel; Rajiv Aggarwal, Director & Head of Public Policy, Meta – India; Rohit Kapoor, CEO, India & Southeast Asia, OYO Hotels & Rooms and Dhruv Shringi, Co-Founder & CEO, Yatra.
The ‘Tourism Week’ (3-15 January) being organised by the Ministry of Tourism, Government of India, will comprise of various sessions which will be presided over by representatives from the Ministry of Tourism and States including Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh, Goa, Punjab, Odisha, Arunachal Pradesh, among others.