21st March 2011, www.dailynews.lk, By Sanjeevi Jayasuriya
Sri Lanka needs to focus on creating an 'Asian Highway' to promote tourism industry as in the case of European Union countries.
We could link other Asian countries as a gateway in attracting tourists and a common visa regime could further enhance the possibility of tourist influx.
The Asian continent offers huge potential for tourism as it is the most populated continent and has a readily available market, Tourist Hotels Association of Sri Lanka President Anura Lokuhetti told Daily News Business.
"We are sitting on a gold mine and need to exploit this situation. Asia could be promoted as a common tourist destination where there are numerous attractions," he said.
However, we need to be mindful of the tremendous competition among the regional countries and need to upgrade the service and product quality.
The infrastructure development should be in place to be on a par with these countries, he said. The English language is widely used in whole of Asia and this is an advantage for tourist promotion.
"We need to encourage more people to invest in the leisure sector and building of more hotels," he said.
The country could achieve the arrival target set by 2016. With the rapid development taking place.
Related Info :
• Sri Lanka Tourism Industry Records the Highest Tourist Arrival Growth in the world for 2010
• Sri Lanka Tourism Wins Gold Award for Essence in Marketing Media Travel Poster Category at PATA Travel Marketing Excellence Awards in Year 2011
• Sri Lanka Tourism Statistics and Tourist Arrivals