New tourism policy to be ready by March-end

New Delhi, January 25: | Updated: Jan 26 2002, 05:30am hrs
Union minister for tourism, Jagmohan, said that the new tourism policy was expected to be finalised by March 31 and would incorporate issues like cleanliness, as such issues went a long way in promoting a country as an ideal tourist destination.

In his address, during a ceremony for presenting national tourism awards to best performing states, the minister said that after the September 11 terrorist attacks on the US, followed by attacks in India, new challenges had emerged before the tourism industry and innovative ways should be adopted to overcome them.

He further said that India was a safe destination and should be promoted as one.

Speaking on the occasion, Mr Peter de Jong, CEO of the Pacific Asia Travel Association (PATA) said the world was eyeing India and China as the leading tourism destinations.

India has a promising future in the global tourism picture, Mr Jong said, adding that PATA will hold its 51st annual conference in New Delhi this year, after a gap of 24 years.

Mr Jong also said that the speed and extent of tourism revival would now be driven mostly by security concerns and economic conditions in source markets. While the best tourism performance state award was bagged by Kerela, which also got the award for most innovative use of information technology, Sikkim got the award for best performing state in the North-East.