Tourism earnings show 20 percent growth

Tourism Minister K Chiranjeevi
Tourism Minister K Chiranjeevi

NEW DELHI: Foreign exchange earnings in the tourism sector in 2012 was Rs 94,487 crore, a growth of 21.8 per cent over the previous year.

India ranked 16th in the world tourism receipts during 2012 according UN World Tourism Organization’s world tourism barometer, while in the Asia and Pacific region, it stood seventh, Minister of State for Tourism K Chiranjeevi said.

In 2011, the country earned Rs 77,591 crore and in 2010 Rs 64,889 crore.

In a written reply in the Rajya Sabha, he said the government has amended its visa manual to extend collective landing permits facility with effect from April 1.

Foreign tourists in groups of four or more arriving by air or sea and sponsored by Indian travel agencies approved by the Tourism Ministry and with a pre-drawn itinerary will be granted collective landing permit for a period not exceeding 60 days, with multiple entry facilities.

Tourists or travel agencies shall mandatorily fill in an application online to avail of this facility, he said.

To a separate question, he replied that contribution of tourism in gross domestic product (GDP) and employment generation in the country in 2009-10 was estimated to be 6.8 per cent and 10.2 per cent respectively. -PTI