BHUBANESWAR: The Odisha government spent over Rs 258 crore during the last three years to improve tourism infrastructure in Odisha where foreign tourist arrival increased by 14 per cent and overall visitors by nine per cent during the period.
“Tourist arrival in the State has gone up from 98,66,810 in 2013 to 1,29,19,260 in 2016, recording a growth rate of nine per cent per annum,” Tourism and Culture Minister Ashok Panda told mediapersons here on Sunday, reports The New Indian Express.
Highlighting the achievement of his department during the last three years, the Minister said foreign tourist arrival also increased from 66,675 in 2013 to 76,361 in 2016, posting a growth of 14 per cent.
Listing the steps taken for attracting tourists, Panda said Bhubaneswar airport was declared as an international airport which helped in increasing the number of tourist arrival. Air India is operating a direct flight from Varanasi to Bhubaneswar four days a week, he said and added that direct flight service between Bhubaneswar and Kuala Lumpur has been established by Air Asia.
The Minister said the new Tourism Policy launched in November, 2016 offers incentives in the form of capital subsidies upto Rs 10 crore and Rs 15 crore for projects below and above Rs 50 crore.