SLTDA and UNDP with financial assistance from the EU to support tourism sector.
The Morning: The Ministry of Tourism and the Sri Lanka Tourism Development Authority (SLTDA) in partnership with the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) in Sri Lanka with financial assistance from the European Union (EU) in Sri Lanka has launched new measure to support the tourism sector through the “Transforming Tourism in Sri Lanka: Emerging from crisis as a strong, resurgent and rebranded industry” project, which has been underway for the past year.
The project’s central focus is on building a transformed, competitive, and resilient tourism sector, with requisite policies and institutional capacities to deliver unique and sustainable tourism experiences.
With global and local calls for mainstreaming sustainability principles within all the facets of the tourism sector, SLTDA, with the support of UNDP in Sri Lanka’s BIOFIN programme, established a Sustainability Unit, marking a step forward toward green development within the tourism sector.
With the participation of UNDP in Sri Lanka Officer in Charge Malin Herwig and EU Delegation to Sri Lanka Deputy Head of Co-operation Edoardo Spacca, the equipment was handed over to SLTDA Chairman Priantha Fernando for the Sustainability Unit, and to Department of Trade, Commerce and Tourism Provincial Director – Central Province Anuri Tilakaratne, along with UNDP in Sri Lanka Chief Technical Advisor – Tourism Kumar Joseph De Silva to further support their activities. Two carrying capacity studies and the value chain studies conducted for Sigiriya and Knuckles-Riverston were also presented at the meeting to Minister of Tourism and Lands Harin Fernando.
Notable attendees included Secretary to the Ministry of Tourism and Lands W.A. Chulananda Perera, SLTDA Director – Domestic Tourism and Community Relations Upali Rathnayake, and senior officials of the Ministry.
Sri Lanka’s tourism industry was one of the fastest growing sectors in the country when the global pandemic dealt a blow to the tourism industry the world over. However, the country’s tourism industry is currently on the recovery path recording a steady growth every month. The revenue earned from the industry is also on a steady increase with Sri Lanka’s tourism industry showing confidence in achieving its tourist arrival targets during the upcoming tourism season. The country’s tourism authorities are also engaged in an aggressive promotional campaigns in key source markets while also exploring new tourism concepts as well. Sri Lanka has received much exposure on international media with global travel publications identifying the country as a must visit tourist destination. The financial assistance being pledged to the tourism industry by the UNDP and EU is indicative of the growth and business potential in Sri Lanka’s tourism industry. There is a significant expansion in business/investment opportunities in Sri Lanka’s tourism industry due to the adoption of new tourism concepts as well as diversifying the tourist attractions in the country. Given the expansion in Sri Lanka’s business/investment opportunities in the country’s tourism industry, foreign businesses/investors could confidently explore the opportunities in the industry.
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