New Minister urged to improve infrastructure

MEMBERS of the Indian travel trade cite tourism infrastructure as the one area the country’s new tourism minister, Subhod Kant Sahay, should prioritise.

World Travel & Tourism Council – India Initiative chairman Vivek Nair said India needed around 100,000 more rooms to accommodate domestic and international demand. Though 20,000 rooms are set to open throughout the country over the next three years, this still leaves a gaping hole of 80,000 rooms.

“Room rates would come down by some 30 to 35 per cent if there is enough supply,” Nair said. “All these elements – more rooms and better rates – would allow us to achieve the target of 10 million tourists by 2015.”

Ajay Prakash, Travel Agents Federation of India president, called for more tourism support infrastructure. “We need to improve inter-city connectivity through rail and land, and build rest stops and facilities that would make travel in India more convenient for tourists.”

AirTravel Enterprises chairman and managing director E M Najeeb said: “You don’t even need a marketing campaign. The Minister just needs to focus on providing the necessary infrastructure and waste management. These alone will bring in tourism investments and create a lot of opportunities.”

– Full story in TTG India, February/March

By Ollie Quiniquini

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