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Third G20 Tourism Working Group Meeting to be held in Srinagar on May 22-24

Of the over 200 events to be held across the country during the presidency, more than 100 have taken place already, the Union tourism secretary said



Press Trust of India Jaipur

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The third G20 Tourism Working Group Meeting will be held in Srinagar from May 22 to 24, a move which will help in boosting tourist footfalls in Jammu and Kashmir, Union Tourism Secretary Arvind Singh said on Sunday.
Addressing a G20 Tourism Expo held at a luxury heritage hotel in Jaipur, he said that under India's G20 presidency, the tourism sector is providing an "unparalleled opportunity" to highlight the country's tourism offerings and share its success stories on the global stage.
Of the over 200 events to be held across the country during the presidency, more than 100 have taken place already, the Union tourism secretary said.
"Two Tourism Working Group (TWG) meetings of the G20 have already taken place in Bhuj and Siliguri, and now the third will take place in Srinagar on May 22-24," he said.
"A team from the Tourism Ministry and the G20 secretariat is currently in J-K to assess the preparedness that will be needed to host the event in May," he told PTI on the sidelines of the expo.
This will be the first major international event to be held in Kashmir after the abrogation of Article 370 in August 2019.
About 100 international delegates and 50-100 Indian members will take part in the meeting.
"In Srinagar, delegates will be taken on shikara ride in Dal Lake, and they will also be treated to cultural programmes at Sher-e-Kashmir Convention Centre. Later, they will go to Gulmarg where they will take gondola ride," Singh said.
In Gulmarg, there will be a technical session on promotion of film tourism, he added.
Representatives of various states, film industry, producers and others will be there and those from states will share their film tourism policies, the secretary said.
Earlier in his address, Singh said that during India's G20 presidency, the Ministry of Tourism has planned to organise a number of events engaging not only government-level stakeholders but also the travel, tourism and hospitality sector.
The whole world is experiencing a recovery in the tourism sector after the COVID-19 pandemic. According to a recent study by the World Travel and Tourism Council (WTTC), the prediction is that the global tourism economy will grow at 5.2 per cent while the overall economy will grow at 2.5 per cent till 2030, he said.
Despite the challenges posed by the pandemic, India has received 6.2 million foreign tourists in 2022, with a growth rate of 307.9 per cent, as compared to 1.52 million in 2021, he said.
During its G20 presidency, India has focussed on several key priority areas, including sustainable development, digitalisation, and the promotion of inclusive growth, the secretary said.
"We are hopeful that a G20 tourism ministers' conference, due later this year, would focus on sustainable tourism to support environment and create opportunities for local businesses," he said.
India plans to promote green tourism, open up to 50 new tourism destinations, and launch a publicity campaign in overseas markets during its presidency of the G20 this year, the top official said.
Tourism can be used as a vehicle for promoting awareness about archaeological sites, which can lead to better understanding of cultural heritage of a destination and promotion of economic and social development of local communities, he said.
The government is keen to attract global investment into the Indian tourism and hospitality sector along with investments in tourism infrastructure, technology, skill development, startups and more and actively working towards this, the secretary said.
Rajasthan Tourism Secretary Gayatri Rathore, in her address at the expo, spoke of the recovery made by the sector and how G20 has given the much-needed impetus.
On the heritage tourism front, she said, about 75 per cent of the heritage hotels in India are located in Rajasthan, and many of these properties have been restored and reused attracting tourists.

(Only the headline and picture of this report may have been reworked by the Business Standard staff; the rest of the content is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

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First Published: Apr 23 2023 | 8:19 PM IST

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