The Sri Lankan government is all set to declare 2022 as the “Visit Sri Lanka Year” in line with the integrated five-year Global Communication Campaign (GCC), as its aims to attract 6 million tourists and $10 billion in earnings by 2025 despite the challenges by the Covid-19 pandemic.
“As per our pre-Covid plan, it is critical to embark on an effective and holistic destination marketing campaign. This targeted program will not be altered even amidst the pandemic challenges,” tourism minister Prasanna Ranatunga said.
The Minister said Sri Lanka aims to generate $10 billion in income by attracting 6 million tourists by 2025, as set by President Gotabaya Rajapaksa in his policy statement of ‘Vistas of Prosperity and Splendour’ said. Sri Lankan tourism has been recognised as a thrust sector to rebuild the economy and was identified as an export sector.
According to official statistics, 101,872 tourists arrived from January 1 to November 28, which included 41,177 tourists that arrived in the island nation this month. Tourism was one of the worst-hit industries by the pandemic in Sri Lanka with the livelihoods of nearly 4 million people, directly and indirectly, affected by the lockdowns and the closing of borders.