Category Archives: MOT

Bodh Gaya to host Buddhist Conclave- March 29-31

The Buddhist Conclave will be held at Bodh Gaya from March 29-31, 2016. The conference is being organised by Federation of Associations in Indian Tourism and Hospitality (FAITH) in collaboration with Ministry of Commerce (MOC) and Ministry of Tourism (MOT) with a view to develop the Buddhist Circuit especially in the states of Uttar Pradesh, Bihar in India and Nepal and also look forward to foreign investments in the segment. Sarab Jit Singh, Vice Chairman, FAITH, said that it is important to understand the ground realities and deliberate on the requirements to stimulate the tourist arrivals which is hovering about 1 million foreign tourist arrivals annually to its true potential of minimum 10 million every year. The association has proposed participation of Union Ministries, state governments, religious Buddhist bodies, ambassadors of different countries to India, IRCTC, DGCA, Airports Authority of India along with stakeholders from the private sector, such as hotels, restaurants, tour operators etc. The major issues to be deliberated are international connectivity to Gaya; upgrading of Gaya International Airport; road and railway connectivity to the region; improvement of issuance of visas and facilitation at arrival and departure; aesthetic development of the area; development of proper accommodation facilities; training of local guides in various languages along with other issues. An estimate total of 250 people are expected to attend this conference. 

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6.8% growth in FTAs in Jan ’16 over Jan ’15

Foreign Tourist Arrivals (FTAs) during January 2016 were 8.44 lakh as compared to FTAs of 7.91 lakh during January 2015 and 7.58 lakh in January 2014. There has been a growth of 6.8% in January 2016 over January 2015. The percentage share of FTAs in India during January 2016 among the top 15 source countries was highest from USA (15.29%) followed by Bangladesh (11.99%), UK (11.23%), Canada (4.87%), Australia (3.97%), Russian Federation (3.71%), Germany (3.27%), France (2.98%), Sri Lanka (2.97%), China (2.74%), Malaysia (2.59%), Japan (2.38%), Rep. of Korea (1.82%), Nepal (1.76%) and Afghanistan (1.62%). The percentage share of FTAs in India during January 2016 among the top 15 ports was highest at Delhi Airport (28.38%) followed by Mumbai Airport (19.59%), Chennai Airport (7.92%), Haridaspur Land check post (6.58%), Bangalore Airport (5.72%), Goa Airport (5.68%), Kolkata Airport (3.92%), Cochin Airport (3.86%), Ahmadabad Airport (3.48%), Hyderabad Airport (2.83%), Trivandrum Airport (1.84%), Gede Rail (1.51%), Tiruchirapalli Airport (1.26%), Amritsar Airport (0.82%) and Sonauli Land check post (0.76%). Foreign Exchange Earnings (FEEs) from Tourism in India during January 2016 were Rs 13,669 crore as compared to Rs 12,100 crore in January 2015 and Rs 11,664 crore in January 2014. The growth rate in FEEs in rupee terms during January 2016 over January 2015 was 13 per cent as compared to a positive growth of 3.7 per cent in January 2015 over January 2014.

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ITDC: Rs 2.54 cr profit in Q3, 2015-16

The total turnover of India Tourism Development Corporation (ITDC) in quarter ending December 2015 stood at Rs.123.85 crore. The public sector undertaking under the aegis of the Ministry of Tourism (MOT), registered operating profit at Rs 17.26 crore and Net Profit Before Tax (PBT) at Rs 2.54 crore in last quarter Oct-Dec, 2015-16. In first three quarters of 2015-16, the company has registered a turnover of Rs 329.72 crore, while the operating profit was registered at Rs 25.76 crore and net profit at Rs 6.83 crore. These details were announced in the Board of Directors’ meeting of the company on February 12, 2016, at the Group’s flagship hotel, The Ashok, New Delhi.

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20% of MOT’s budget for NE: Billa

The Ministry of Tourism (MOT) has been allocating 15-20 per cent of their budget every year to the North East region, crossing the earmarked 10 per cent by the government, said Suman Billa, Joint Secretary – Tourism, Govt. of India at the ‘Destination North East 2016’ meet. He said, MOT is also planning to organise a major Investment Summit around June-July. How to drive private investment into the Northeastern states to further the participation of private sector and help encourage growth will be one of the main components of the summit, he said. The event was organised by the Ministry of Development of North-Eastern Region (DoNER) and the Ministry of Culture.

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Passport services eased with 5-day appointment window

Passport services can now be availed with greater convenience in a five-day appointment window, shared the Ministry of External Affairs, Govt. of India, on Twitter. As part of a citizen-centric initiative, the new provision would allow applicants to choose any appointment date online from the earliest five available dates while scheduling appointment for passport related services. Steps to liberalise the police verification procedure for passport issuance have also been implemented with the paperless end-to-end digital flow of Police Verification Report (PVR) process, further reducing the time required for PVR within the desired time limit of 21 days. Henceforth, normal passport applications of all first time applicants furnishing Aadhaar, electoral photo identity card (EPIC), permanent account number (PAN) card, and an affidavit in the format of Annexure-I will be processed on post-police verification basis without payment of any additional fees, subject to successful online validation of Aadhaar number. Furthermore, mPassport Police app has been launched for digital submission of PVR by field officers. 1.20 crore passport services were rendered in 2015 registering an increase of 21 per cent over 2014.

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4.45 lakh eTV tourist arrivals in 2015

During January-December 2015, a total of 4,45,300 tourist arrived on e-Tourist Visa (eTV) as compared to 39,046 during the same period in 2014 registering a growth of 1040.4 per cent. In December 2015, a total of 1,03,617 tourist arrived in India on eTV, registering a growth of 635.8 per cent growth over December 2014. The high growth may be attributed to introduction of eTV for 113 countries as against the coverage of the earlier ETA enabled TVoA scheme for 43 countries. Among the countries availing eTV, UK continues to occupy the top slot followed by the U.S and Russia where the percentage shares of the top five source countries were UK (23.81%), USA (19.59%), Russian Federation (9.33%), Australia (5.44%) and Germany (4.86%) respectively. The percentage shares of the top five ports in tourist arrivals on eTV during December 2015 were New Delhi Airport (36.23%) followed by Mumbai Airport (21.90%), Goa Airport (16.54%), Bengaluru Airport (5.54%) and Kochi Airport (4.68%).

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MOT to train youth as Tourist Facilitators

On the occasion of National Youth Day, the Ministry of Tourism (MOT) has launched new skill initiatives keeping in mind the need to improve service standards, a pre-requisite to attract larger number of tourists to India. The programme to make ‘Paryatak Mitra’ (Tourist Facilitators) is targeted at university students including those enrolled with the NCC and NSS, which will be implemented first at destinations identified under the PRASAD scheme of the Ministry of Tourism. This programme will attempt to inculcate appropriate tourism traits and knowledge among trainees to enable them to act as ‘Paryatak Mitra’. A similar programme will be started to appoint Tourist Facilitators in the Northeast. The duration of the programmes will range between four to 30 days and will be implemented by the Indian Institute of Tourism and Travel Management. The programmes began their first batch on January 12, 2016. The Sensitisation Programme for Existing Service Providers at Varanasi will target to train boatmen, rickshaw pullers, pandas, porters, shopkeepers and street vendors (in and around Ghats and temples) to eventually achieve an improved tourist specific service ambience and to further the Swachh Bharat Abhiyaan.

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Medical & Wellness Tourism Promotion Board set in motion

At the first meeting of the National Medical and Wellness Tourism Promotion Board, Dr. Mahesh Sharma, Minister of State for Culture (Independent Charge), Tourism (Independent Charge) and Civil Aviation, said that the board’s role is to act as a facilitator to tap the potential of medical and wellness tourism in an efficient way. Held on January 13, 2016 at Hotel Samrat New Delhi, Sharma said that their agenda is to provide a dedicated institutional framework to take forward the cause of promotion of medical, wellness, yoga and ayurveda tourism and any other format of the Indian system of medicine. The meeting was held in the presence of various officials from MOT, hospitals, associations, hospitality industry, wellness sector, to name a few, to identify strengths and issues, and to draw up short and long term strategies for marketing and promotion of medical and wellness tourism. The Board plans to build up a Data Bank of available resources in the field of Medical and Wellness services in the country and to develop mechanism to disseminate such information to the source markets.

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National Medical and Wellness Tourism Promotion Board’s 1st meeting on Jan 13

The first-ever meeting of the National Medical and Wellness Tourism Promotion Board will be held under the Chairmanship of Mahesh Sharma, Minister of State for Tourism and Culture (Independent Charge) and Civil Aviation on January 13, 2016 at Hotel Samrat, New Delhi.  The meeting will draw short-term and long-term road maps and strategies for marketing and promotion of medical and wellness tourism, both within India and abroad. Future activities aimed at creating synergy between the tourism sector and the healthcare sector will be outlined. Key members other than stakeholders and the representatives of related government departments, tourism and hospitality sector and experts in various disciplines including Wellness and Yoga will be participating in the meeting. The National Medical and Wellness Tourism Promotion Board was constituted by the Ministry of Tourism in October 2015 to provide leadership of the Government within a framework of prudent and effective measures, thereby enabling promotion and positioning of India as a competent and credible medical and wellness tourism destination.

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3.2% rise in FTAs in December 2015

Foreign Tourist Arrivals (FTAs) during the Month of December 2015 were 9.13 lakh as compared to FTAs of 8.85 lakh during  December 2014. There has been a growth of 3.2% in December 2015 over the same period last year. Ministry of Tourism has released estimates of Foreign Tourist Arrivals (FTAs) on the basis of Nationality-wise, Port-wise data received from Bureau of Immigration (BOI) and Foreign Exchange Earnings (FEEs) from tourism on the basis of data available from Reserve Bank of India. FTAs during the period January- December 2015 were 80.16 lakh with a growth of 4.4%, as compared to the FTAs of 76.79 lakh with a growth of 10.2% in January- December 2014 . FEEs during the month of December 2015 were Rs. 13,253 crore as compared to Rs. 12,988 crore in December 2014 . The FEEs in Rupees terms during December 2015 registered a positive growth of 2.0% over December 2014 as compared to positive growth of 8.3% in December 2014 .

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