Category Archives: Associations

World Economic Forum recommends national tourism board for India

The World Economic Forum’s white paper on India’s tourism industry outlines the country’s $20 billion tourism opportunity that lies untapped. One of its recommendations is the formation of a tourism board. According to the White Paper titled ‘Incredible India 2.0 India’s $20 Billion Tourism Opportunity,’ a proposal to create a tourism board is put forward. It says, ‘India has more than 50 active foreign tourism boards, yet the country does not have its own tourism board. While it has a number of industry associations and state-level bodies, no public-private organisation represents the industry, and these bodies work independently to drive forward their own agenda. The industry is fragmented and hindered by poor coordination between the state and central government as well as within the central government itself. No single ministry is responsible for all the policies affecting the aviation, travel and tourism industry. The Ministries of Civil Aviation, Tourism, Home Affairs, Culture, and Road Transport and Highways, among others, have all been actively involved in the industry’s policies.’ The paper released in September this year goes on to add that this gap must be filled by bringing the public and private sectors together under an empowered and proactive body. ‘To fuel its success, the board would consider the structure, objectives and best practices implemented in other countries, keeping in mind India’s strengths and limitations.’ Speaking on the scope of implementation that this White Paper has, Tiffany Misrahi, Community Lead, Aviation, Travel & Tourism Industries, World Economic Forum, says, “The Minister of Civil Aviation Ashok Gajapathi Raju, as well as Minister of State Jayant Sinha, along with the Chief Executive Officer of NITI Aayog, Amitabh Kant, have been actively involved in …

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FAITH elects new team

The Federation of Associations in Indian Tourism and Hospitality (FAITH) has elected its new team with Nakul Anand, Executive Director, ITC, as the Chairman, who was nominated by Hotel Association of India (HAI). The Vice Chairman is Akshay Kumar, CEO, Mercury Himalayan Explorations, who was nominated by Adventure Tour Operators Association of India (ATOAI). The association also created an additional position of Vice Chairman, for which they have elected Sunil Kumar R, CEO, Travel World, who was nominated by Travel Agents Association of India (TAAI).  Subhash Goyal, Chairman, STIC Travel Group, who was nominated by Indian Association of Tour Operators (IATO), is the new Honorary Secretary, while Garish Oberoi, Partner, Hotel Uberoi Anand, has been declared as the Treasurer. Aashish Gupta continues as the Consulting CEO of FAITH. All the above positions have been unanimously elected by the FAITH Board.

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TTAUP’s 1st Travel Mart records over 200 attendees

The Travel Trade Association of Uttar Pradesh (TTAUP), a Lucknow based, local travel trade association organised its first Travel Trade Mart (TTM) 2017 in Lucknow. As many as 30 exhibitors showcased their products to the travel agents and tour operators of UP. These exhibitors encompassed all segments of tourism and hospitality like cruises, tourism boards, destination management companies, hotels, airlines etc. The show was attended by over 200 travel agents and tour operators from various cities in Uttar Pradesh like Lucknow, Kanpur, Bijnor, Allahabad, Varanasi, Gorakhpur, Agra, Mau, Muradabad etc. Rita Bahuguna Joshi, Minister of Women Welfare, Family Welfare, Maternity and Child Welfare and Tourism, Government of Uttar Pradesh, inaugurated the mart. Vivek Pandey, President, TTAUP, says, “This is the first time we have hosted such a show. We felt that many times it was not possible for the trade in UP to attend shows in Delhi, Mumbai, Chennai and other metro cities and unfortunately not many shows come to UP. The purpose is to offer a platform to the agents of the state to gather product knowledge, information and be connected to the various suppliers directly rather than route it through bigger cities. This would allow us to contain business of UP within UP and grow the tourism industry in the state. This year was an experiment and it turned out extremely well. Next year we will increase the scale and scope of this show manifolds.”

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OTOAI’s national election on Nov 27

Post its successful convention in Ras Al Khaimah, Outbound Tour Operators Association of India (OTOAI) is gearing up for their national election on November 27, 2017. Making this annoucement, Guldeep Singh Sahni, President, OTOAI, said, “We are currently giving finishing touches to tasks and projects. We had previously undertaken to give the new committee a strong base in their transitory period to take our hard work even further during their tenure.” The elections will be conducted for 11 Executive Committee members who will further elect the new working committee.

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PATA extends CEO Mario Hardy’s term for 3 years

The Executive Board of the Pacific Asia Travel Association (PATA) has extended the contract of Chief Executive Officer Dr. Mario Hardy for a period of three years commencing January 1, 2018. Dr Hardy said, “I am delighted to have an opportunity to work with our outstanding management team in building upon the PATA successes of the past three years. We still face many challenges as a membership organisation but our determination to add value to the many benefits of PATA membership is being recognised in the public and private sectors. We shall continue with our primary mission of promoting sustainable and responsibly tourism development throughout the world as we encourage travel to, from and within the Asia Pacific region.” Mario Hardy joined PATA in 2012 as Chief Operating Officer and was appointed Chief Executive Officer on November 1, 2014. He is a past Chairman of the Board of Trustees of the PATA Foundation, a non-profit organisation with a focus on the protection of the environment, the conservation of culture and heritage, and support for education. He worked for 26 years in specialised aviation businesses with a focus upon data analytics and technology, occupying leadership roles in Montreal, Vancouver, London, Beijing and Singapore. In 2016, he received an honorary Doctorate of Letters from Capilano University for his philanthropic work in Cambodia where he helped develop a school for underprivileged children and for his support in the development of a Community Based Tourism (CBT) project in Vietnam. In January 2017 Mario Hardy graduated from the Singularity University, Executive Program on the subject of Exponential Technologies. PATA Chairperson Sarah Mathews said, “I am delighted that Mario has agreed to continue as our Chief …

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Mandate of World Committee on Tourism Ethics renewed until 2021

With a leading role in the recent approval of the Framework Convention on Tourism Ethics by the UNWTO General Assembly held in Chengdu, China, the composition of the World Committee on Tourism Ethics has been renewed. In order to continue advancing the important work of this subsidiary organ of the UNWTO General Assembly, the mandate of the outgoing members of the World Committee on Tourism Ethics was renewed until 2021, with Pascal Lamy continuing to chair the Committee. Joining the four Members whose mandate was set to end in 2019 – Yoshiaki Hompo (Japan), Fiona Jeffery (UK), Tanja Mihalic (Slovenia) and Eugenio Yunis (Chile) – will be Gede Ardika (Indonesia), Jean Marc Mignon (International Social Tourism Organization) and Ron Oswald (The International Union of Food, Agricultural, Hotel, Restaurant, Catering, Tobacco and Allied Workers’ Associations) as Committee Members, and Hiran Cooray (Sri Lanka), Suzy Hatough (Jordan) and Günnur Diker (Turkey) as Alternates. The only new member joining the World Committee on Tourism Ethics four a four-year term starting 17 September 2017 is Rosette Chantal Rugamba, Founder and Managing Director of Songa Africa and Amakoro Lodge (Rwanda).

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Chander Mansharamani to continue as Vice Chairman, ICPB; new appointments in Governing Body

Chander Mansharamani has been re-elected as Vice Chairman of India Convention Promotion Bureau (ICPB) for another two-year term. Amaresh Tiwari and Girish Kwatra will also continue on their respective posts of Hon. Secretary and Hon. Treasurer. This was declared during the association’s 30th Annual General Meeting and Elections for the Governing Board held at The Ashok in New Delhi which was also attended by Suman Billa, Joint Secretary, Ministry of Tourism, Government of India and Chairman, ICPB. New appointments were made in the Hotel, Tour Operator and Congress / Convention Centres categories. The two new appointments in the hotel category were Hemant Mediratta and Saurabh Bhargava & Abinash Manghani (due to a tie for the second post). Gunjan Suri and Naveen Chibber took up the two new posts in the travel agency category while Ajay Vinayak and Anuj Wadhwa took the two posts in tour operator category. The post for the Congress / Convention Centres went to Sudeep Sarcar. Talking about the key priorities for the bureau now, Chander Mansharamani, Vice Chairman, ICPB, said, “the government has been looking at us as the frontal organisation for marketing India as a convention destination. Keeping that in mind, we are completely invested to take things to the next level. Currently we have outlined three core areas to focus on; first is market creation wherein creating our chapters and bidding of international conferences will be a part of that. Market creation will involve conducting roadshows both in India and international markets. The second priority is Visa, lobbying and making the entire process easier to get a visa for delegates attending conferences in India and thirdly we want to sensitise the central and state governments on the …

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UNWTO promotes sustainable tourism with travellers’ competition

The World Tourism Organisation (UNWTO) has launched a travellers’ competition ahead of World Tourism Day in order to promote responsible travel. The initiative is part of the ‘Travel.Enjoy.Respect’ campaign taking place within the International Year of Sustainable Tourism for Development 2017. The winner of the competition will be awarded a one-month trip across the world visiting sustainable tourism initiatives. The winner’s across the world journey will be supported by Explore WorldWide, an adventure travel group offering a wide range of activities and experiences with a commitment to responsible travel. Destinations including Colombia, Germany, Mexico, Ras al-Khaimah and the Léman region in Switzerland have offered to host the winner and help them discover responsible and sustainable tourism practices. “Every action counts and travellers have a strong role to play in building a more sustainable tourism sector. Imagine the impact of one small action multiplied by millions,” said Taleb Rifai, Secretary-General of UNWTO. “We want to inspire all travellers to be the change they want to see in the world.”

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IHHA conducts annual convention in Jaisalmer

The Indian Heritage Hotels Association (IHHA) conducted its 6th Annual Convention this time in Jaisalmer, Rajasthan. The Convention was held from September 2-3, 2017, at Hotel Suryagarh in Jaisalmer. With an aim of trying to revive the rich, cultural, historical and architectural heritage of India IHHA 2017 saw the participation of several heritage hoteliers. The Association which was formed with only 14 members has now reached a whopping 198 members in 2017, with members spread over different parts of the country. This year’s theme – ‘Harnessing Heritage to Tourism Advantage’ also focused on reviving the traditional art, culture music and to provide local artisans opportunities to practice their craft. The convention was inaugurated on September 2 by the Minister of State for Tourism, Government of Rajasthan, Krishnendra Kaur along with other dignitaries by lighting the traditional lamp. The session was headed by IHHA President, Maharaja Gajsingh of Jodhpur. The panel saw the participation of Deputy Speaker, Rajasthan Legislative Assembly, Rao Rajendra Singh; Additional Chief Secretary, Tourism, Government of Rajasthan, NC Goel; Vice President of IHHA, Jose Dominic; Principal Secretary Tourism and Cultural Affairs, Government of Punjab, Jaspal Singh; Member of Parliament, Yuvraj Sambhiraje Chattrapti and Joint Managing Director of Maharashtra Tourism, Ashutosh Rathore. The session witnessed discussions on several topics such as – India’s large young workforce, as its strength; promoting the art and culture of special regions and generating employment; framing a National policy on heritage tourism and promoting wellness tourism. The session was moderated by Mr. Rakesh Mathur. The vote of thanks was given by the Honorary General Secretary of IHHA, Randhir Vikram Singh. Rajasthan Chief Minister Vasundhara Raje attended the heritage hotels convention on September 3 at …

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Garish Oberoi is the new FHRAI President

The Federation of Hotel and Restaurant Associations of India (FHRAI) has elected Garish Oberoi as its President for the term September 2017-2018. This was announced during the federation’s 61st Annual General Meeting (AGM) held at the Le Meridien New Delhi, on Sept 23. A seasoned hotelier, Oberoi has been in the hospitality industry for over three decades. He previously held the post of Vice President & Treasurer, FHRAI. He holds a Masters of Business Administration from IIFT and is a Graduate in Economics from the University of Delhi. Also, Surinder Jaiswal has been elected as the Honorary Secretary of FHRAI. Speaking on the occasion, Oberoi said, “I am very grateful for this opportunity. I would want to move ahead taking together all stakeholders in the tourism and hospitality fraternity. Key focus would be on getting the GST reduced further to at least 12 per cent. I would also be emphasising on skill development and increasing FHRAI membership base. The next FHRAI Convention will be taking place in the heritage city of Lucknow.” Oberoi is the former Director of Chandigarh Industrial & Tourism Corporation Ltd. He has been a special examiner of Hotel Management & Catering Technology at Rohilkhand University and has been Asst. Governor of Rotary Bareilly. Besides being on the Advisory Board of Carnegie Mellon University’s Indian subsidiary, Oberoi holds important position in several social and educational organisations of Bareilly. He is a keen golfer as well. As the President, Oberoi will supervise and guide the administration of the Federation that is run on a day-to-day basis by the Secretary General and the Secretariat.

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