Tag Archives: Vice Chairman

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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FICCI’s Global MICE Travel Mart begins in Delhi

The government shall soon roll out its much-awaited National Tourism Policy, expected to provide single window clearance for organisation of meetings and conferences, informed Satyajeet Rajan, Director General, Ministry of Tourism, Government of India, while addressing the second edition of Global MICE Travel Mart, organised by FICCI jointly with the Ministry of Tourism, Government of India, on September 14 at The Lalit, New Delhi. He said that there was a need to provide incentives to this sector to make it competitive in the world market. He added that there was a pressing need to conduct a study to assess size of the industry and a consultant was being appointed to suggest a workable roadmap for the development of the sector. During the inaugural of this mart, which is underway until Sept 16, a FICCI-MRSS Knowledge Paper on ‘MICE Tourism Powerhouse of a New Era Tourism’ was unveiled by the dignitaries. The six-point agenda of the study suggested a six-point roadmap for development of India as a MICE tourism hotspot. Chander Mansharamani, Vice Chairman, ICPB and Managing Director, Alpcord Network Travel & Conferences Management Company, said that MICE was an economic activity and there was an imperative need for the creation of a market for the sector. Besides, he emphasised on the need for readily available comprehensive database, building capacities and capabilities while taking into account competition to make India a MICE hub. Highlighting the immense potential of MICE tourism in West Bengal, Amitava Rathod, Deputy General Manager, West Bengal Tourism Development Corporation, said that that with new convention centres projects such as HIDCO, Digha and Bagdogra coming up in the state, West Bengal is bound to lead the country in …

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ICPB Convention in Hyderabad from August 29-31

The 10th Conventions India Conclave, a flagship event of the India Convention Promotion Bureau (ICPB) has been finalized to be held in Hyderabad from 29th – 31st August 2017. ICPB will be hosting their annual Conventions India Conclave at the Hyderabad International Convention Centre this time around. This was announced by Chander Mansharamani, Vice Chairman, ICPB who also added,“ We will take this opportunity to project ICPB as a parent body for promoting as a convention destination especially when we are working on restructuring of ICPB and strengthening of ICPB .” The theme of the event is Expanding the Boundaries – Mission Possible, focusing on all the segments of MICE. The conclave is expected to have a huge turnout of 250 – 300 delegates comprising stakeholders, corporate heads, the medical fraternity representatives, the scientific community and all other decision makers. Along with them there will be nearly 60 – 70 exhibitors at the conclave. In addition to the B2B meetings this year there will also be an association networking evening, where members will get a chance to interact with all the medical association leaders who are responsible for conducting their events and meeting in India.

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GST negative for inbound: ICPB

Chander Mansharamani, Vice Chairman, ICPB, shared that the GST slabs announced for hospitality industry will negatively affect inbound tourism immediately, deterring tourism especially when the country is in competition with neighbouring countries. “The MICE industry will be terribly hit as most of the convention facilities are only available in 5-star hotels which have room rates of Rs. 5000 or above. The high tax rate of 28 per cent will negatively impact conventions and conferences in the pipeline as well. I feel scope for manipulation has been left for the hotels where one can charge Rs. 4990 for a room and pay only 18 per cent instead of 28 per cent. Also there is confusion whether the tax will be charged on rack rate, published rate or on the negotiated rate. The whole purpose of one tax one India is defeated,” he added.

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Government needs to rethink on taxes: FAITH

The 28 per cent tax on hotels is going to affect not only the hotel industry, but other businesses as well, said Sarab Jit Singh, Vice-Chairman, FAITH. He added, “It is a clear way to kill the travel and hospitality industry. Secondly, GST of 5 per cent on tour operators, which was already there. However, the government should look at if they want to promote tourism or their purpose is to earn tax money from tourism instead of generating employment and earn foreign exchange from this sector. They should decide if they want the tourism industry to perish or flourish. We are tired of knee-jerk reactions that we get from the government now and then. I think the government needs to rethink the decisions on taxes. We are having a meeting with FAITH and work on a consolidated approach to talk to the government on this.”

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IHG introduces its first Holiday Inn hotel in Kolkata

InterContinental Hotels Group strengthens its presence in the East India with the introduction of its first Holiday Inn® hotel in Kolkata – Holiday Inn Kolkata Airport. With the opening of the 137-room hotel in partnership with Jain Group, the total number of Holiday Inn hotels has gone up to 11 in India. Shantha de Silva, Head of South West Asia, InterContinental Hotels Group said, “Holiday Inn brand family is one of the growth drivers for IHG’s expansion in India.  We are proud to add Holiday Inn Kolkata Airport to our portfolio and look forward to expanding our footprint in West Bengal. We are delighted to be working with the Jain Group and look forward to offering business ready services to our guests in Kolkata.” Shrayans Jain, Vice Chairman, Jain Group said, “We are very happy to partner with IHG and announce the opening of ‘Holiday Inn Kolkata Airport’. Due to increased business activity in the state, West Bengal has become the gateway to North East India enabling an upward swing for the hospitality sector. Strategically located near the airport, the hotel caters to the needs of the guests visiting Kolkata for both business and leisure. We look forward to fulfilling our guests’ expectations with services unique to a Holiday Inn hotel.” Holiday Inn Kolkata Airport is located just five km away from Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose International Airport, with close proximity to Business Parks, SEZs and IT hub of Kolkata in Rajarhat, New Town and Salt Lake Sector-V area. The hotel offers comfort and convenience to the contemporary business and leisure traveler with 137 well-appointed rooms & suites. For MICE and corporate guests, the hotel offers 6,076 sq ft of …

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Allocate more funds for commerce ministry

Sarab Jit Singh, Vice-Chairman, FAITH, appreciated the Finance Minister for taking cognizance of FAITH’s recommendations. “The positive in today’s budget is acceptance and announcement by the Finance Minister of creating five special tourism zones, which was FAITH’s recommendation. Secondly, the announcement for Incredible India branding to be relaunched internationally and 35 per cent increase for its allocation is also a positive from our perspective,” he says. He goes on to explain the flip side. “The negative point according to me is the fact that the government is saying that exports are going down. However, tourism is the only industry which can now bring foreign exchange and generate employment, and the only incentives we were getting from were from the Ministry of Commerce, whose total allocation in the budget has now been reduced. Thus, it is a counterproductive feature. If the government wants to increase imports and wants growth, they cannot have lesser allocation for commerce ministry.” He contemplates on the status of tourism industry post this budget and says, “Tourism in the country is not growing for many years. We have lost for decades together; we have lost marketplace completely internationally; as well as we have lost to competing countries. Until the government moves all the aspects together with full force, we will not have results. I agree that the Prime Minister should talk to the industry directly.”

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600 buyers, 108 exhibitors attend GPS Nagpur

Global Panorama Showcase (GPS) was inaugurated on January 20, 2016, at Hotel Centre Point, Nagpur in the presence of Satinder S. Ahuja, Honorary Counsul, Consulate of Georgia, Marzban Antia, Vice President, TAAI, Ankush Nijhawan, MD, Nijhawan Group, and SanJeet, Vice Chairman, PATA India and MD, DDP Group, among other dignitaries. Harmandeep Singh Anand, Co-founder, GPS and MD, Jagsons Travels, informed that 108 exhibitors showcased their various products and offerings for the Tier II and Tier III markets. The event was attended by over 600 buyers. “If we see the multiplier effect, then approximately for 108 exhibitors and 1,000 buyers, 100,000 meetings can be done. This is a huge number. We have witnessed 99 per cent success in terms of exchange of e-cards.” The GPS mobile application launched for the 5th edition has been a huge success, Anand informed adding that the application is undergoing constant upgrade. He informed that to facilitate live feed and news, TravTalk will be integrated in the application. In the upcoming events, video conferencing facilities will also be made available to the attendees. “The buyers and exhibitors can maintain the database and keep in touch even after the show. All data can be found at one marketplace which will bring together the big and small service providers as well as all kinds of travel agents and tour operators in the Maharashtra, Chhattisgarh and Vidarbha a region” he added. He further informed that five per cent of the profit from GPS this year will be contributed to Dr. Amit Samarth, a doctor by profession but a sports and fitness promoter in India, in order to fund his endeavour to compete in race across America challenge in 2017. …

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Some benefit for inbound tour operators likely

Sarab Jit Singh, Vice Chairman, FAITH, says, “While the service tax would increase to 60 per cent, the government has allowed input credit, which might neutralise the effect of service tax. However, I feel that inbound tourism might not be affected much because of this rule. In fact, there might be some benefit for inbound tour operators in the long run. It will be outbound tour operators, which will see the impact of this announcement. I feel that this ruling is part of government’s move towards GST. Such measures would force people to do business legitimately.

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Make some relaxations until normalcy returns

Sarabjit Singh, Vice Chairman, FAITH, reveals that tour operators are facing problems everywhere they need to pay higher amount, especially at interstate tolls, which has now been relaxed till Nov 11. “The denominations for 50 and 100 is not available in large numbers as of now. Paying monument fee turned out to be a big problem for tourists. Jaipur has made the entry complimentary for the monuments, and the same should be followed at other places. Either there should be alternate arrangements to deal with this problem, or there should be some relaxation until normalcy returns,” he adds.

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