India wants to receive 1% of global tourists

India will create a Buddhist tourism circuit
India will create a Buddhist tourism circuit

The Indian government has set a target of welcoming 1% of global tourist arrivals by next year.

Speaking at a workshop in New Delhi, the country’s Minister of Tourism & Culture, Dr Mahesh Sharma, said that a “multi-pronged strategy is being worked out” to achieve this goal.

This will include the government’s previous-stated aims of improving the “cleanliness, hospitality and safety aspects” of India’s tourism industry, as well as driving greater cooperation between the tourism, culture and aviation sectors.

In addition, five themed tourism circuits will be developed by the Ministry, based on religions or regions. A total investment of INR5 billion (US$79 million) has been earmarked for the development of the Buddhist, Ganga, Krishna, Northeast and Kerala circuits, while Dr Sharma added that plans to develop India’s cruise and wildlife tourism sectors are also being prepared.

In 2013, India welcomed 6.97 million international tourists, representing 0.64% of the global total. But India’s rate of growth (+7.1% in the first 11 months of 2014) is outpacing the global average of approximately +4.7%.

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