India’s second largest state, Madhya Pradesh has made great strides in tourism. “Ten National Tourism Awards in the last couple of years is a testimony that tourism is not only the top priority of our Government but the state is already there amongst the leading tourism destinations in the country. And we are not sitting on the laurels. There is a renewed thrust in our effort to promote tourism and investment in the state,” said Yuvraj Padole, Deputy Director, Events & Marketing, Madhya Pradesh Tourism Board.
Increasing participation of the private sector, making them a greater stakeholders and bringing in new investment in state’s tourism infrastructure like hotels, resorts, convention centers and other tourism related areas would be key to achieve further growth. The state is keen to woo new investors. “The work that has been done in the field of tourism in the state is remarkable. Besides all these tourist destination which we have and which have developed, we have also worked on certain other areas. We started investment promotion cell a couple of years ago within MP Tourism which is basically to promote investment in the state’s tourism sector,” said Padole.
“We came up with a new tourism policy two years ago and this tourism policy also invites people to come and partner with the government and develop their projects. We have land banks for projects like hotels, resorts and convention center where an investor can develop their own project. We have six MP Tourism hotels in different part of the state that are for the take on long term lease as well as MP Tourism’s wayside amenities. The policy is investor friendly and offers incentives, subsidies and discount in order to attract investments and make their projects feasible,” Padole ssaid while talking about opportunities for the potential investor in the state.
Commenting on the land bank policy, Padole said that the department has a very transparent system and everything is mentioned and clarified in the policy in black and white. There are certain norms that needs to be fulfilled, the land is allotted and that too at a very nominal rate. “We are working on all fronts to constantly improve state’s tourism appeal and environment. MP is inviting all potential investors to come and invest in the state’s tourism sector. Our department is ready to hand hold on every front and on every step,” Padole promised.
While interacting at SATTE last month he pointed that MP Tourism has got around 25 stakeholders participating under the MP Tourism Pavilion. “They are basically the people who have invested their money in Madhya Pradesh in the tourism sector, may it be a resort or a hotel or a transport or travel agencies or the like. We have taken new initiatives and new investment are coming up, new ventures are coming up in Madhya Pradesh,” he stressed.
Karnataka based Orange Country Hotels & Resorts has invested in the state. The company has taken land and are developing a resort near medieval town of Mandu, one of the state’s best kept tourism secrets near Indore. Oberoi Hotels is taken the majestic Ajaygarh Fort near Khajuraho that it is converting into a hotel. Likewise other companies are coming and they feel that Madhya Pradesh is a better place to invest, says the Deputy Director.
He also stressed that the state has rigorously worked on two things. “One is infrastructure development and you can see that we have world class accessibility and road network to remote areas and wildlife parks and everywhere. The air connectivity has also been increased so now you can see that many low cost carrier have started flights from different airports inside the state. We have five operational airports so far,” Padole said while concluding.