4 Government Initiatives to Boost the Tourism Industry Post-Covid
The travel sector had taken a massive hit during the pandemic, and the impact was magnified in countries such as India, whose tourism industry forms a significant part of the economy.
The Indian landscape is rich with its calm beaches, lush green forests, mountain treks, as well as stunning monuments, temples, churches and more. Naturally, the country attracts millions of tourists from all over the globe every year.
With the resumption of travel and to compensate for the dormancy experienced during COVID-19, the Indian tourism sector has been gearing up to accommodate more tourists.
The government has also announced several fiscal and non-fiscal relief measures to alleviate losses. Here are 4 Indian government initiatives to boost the tourism industry in 2023.
The G-20 offers the best opportunity for India to showcase its culture, history and tourism potential and to position itself as a major tourist destination in the world. India will soon be presiding over the G20 from December 2022 to November 2023.
India will host over 200 meetings across 55 cities during this period. These meetings are also proposed to be held in several states of India, which is expected to push the country’s tourism industry into the global arena.
The G20 Presidency gives a special opportunity for the Indian travel scenario, which has been slowly recovering post the pandemic.
Several diplomats and delegates from the G20 member countries and guest countries will attend the meetings, and India will have the opportunity to increase its global appeal of India as a tourist hotspot.
The country has a massive wealth of tourist attractions, with its plethora of natural resources, along with monuments of spiritual and cultural importance.
Special Tourism Zones (STZs)
The Ministry of Tourism has ambitious plans to create five Special Tourism Zones (STZs) across the country with premium infrastructure to nurture holistic tourism development.
It seeks to maximise the local community’s benefits while focusing on preserving natural resources for future generations.
These tourist-friendly zones will have a variety of recreational amenities, with cheap flights and hotels provided for easy access to the destinations.
To provide visitors with a variety of experiences and encourage longer stays, the STZs are proposed to contain at least three to four major tourism themes such as cultural, wildlife, heritage, adventure, coastal, etc.
The impact of STZs on the economy is projected to be numerous, including increased Foreign Direct Investments (FDI), more employment growth and an uplift to all elements of the hospitality industry.
Dekho Apna Desh
Dekho Apna Desh is a high-powered campaign announced by Prime Minister Narendra Modi to improve domestic tourism within the country.
Currently available only for Indian citizens, the government offers incentives to selected people who have successfully travelled to designated tourist spots across the countries. The 15 locations chosen for this initiative are:
- Kaziranga National Park
- Mahabodhi Temple
- Humayun’s Tomb
- Amer Fort
- Somnath Temple
- Taj Mahal and Fatehpur Sikri
- Ajanta Ellora
- Red Fort and Qutub Minar
- Konark Sun Temple
Cash assistance for tourism sectors
The Ministry of Tourism (MoT) launched ‘Loan Guarantee Scheme for Covid Affected Tourism Service Sector (LGSCATSS)’, which aims at extending a collateral-free loan to the distressed tourism sector and restarting their business affected due to COVID-19 pandemic.
Under this scheme, a collateral-free loan of upto Rs.10 lakh each may be availed by MoT-approved Tour operators/Travel Agents/Tourist Transport Operators. The scheme is already operational.
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