‘New civil aviation policy to address issues aggressively’

The new civil aviation policy of the union government, which expected soon

DELHI:   The new civil aviation policy of the union government, which is quite on the cards, will address both the issues of opening up the skies and regional connectivity in a very aggressive and fulfilling manner, a top Tourism Ministry official said at an ASSOCHAM event held in Delhi.

“The new tourism policy, which is just a matter of time, is going to highlight and emphasize a lot on the possibility of increasing Meetings, Incentives, Conferences, and Events (MICE) into India,” said Vinod Zutshi, secretary, Ministry of Tourism while inaugurating a ‘Thought Leadership Meet on MICE Tourism in India,’ organized by ASSOCHAM, reports  The New Indian Express.

Talking about the e-visa for MICE, Zutshi, “We had a meeting with the Ministry of Home Affairs a few days ago, we insisted on MICE e-visa as well, we have been trying very hard for e-visa for MICE and medical and we are hopeful to have this e-visa to see the light of the day, particularly for business tourists to begin with but we are insisting that ultimately the conference visa should also be done, which we have been assured that it will be, step-by-step.”

He also said that government had sanctioned 20 projects with an investment worth Rs. 2,000 crore for infrastructure under Swadesh and Prasad schemes in terms of – coastal, eco, wildlife, Buddhist tourism circuits.

Talking about the tourism growth rate in India, he said, “We have regained the pace that we had between 2010 and 2014, touching as much as seven to ten percent, after a lean period of about a year in 2015, we are back in action.”

“The first two months January and February have recorded as much as 9.6 per cent growth, as far as FTAs (foreign tourist arrivals) are concerned,” said Zutshi. “Even the domestic tourism is booming with 14 percent continuous growth rate and with an aim of achieving even more than 15 percent augurs well as far as growth of both domestic and foreign tourism is concerned.”

“I think lot of credit goes to the peaceful and conducive environment in terms of law and order,” he added.

He also said that there is a need to identify coastal areas that can be developed as MICE tourist destinations in India, more so as there had been an investment worth Rs. 500 crore made in promoting tourism in coastal states.


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