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January 08, 2012
 
Gujarat Tourism To Spend Rs 5,500 Cr To Ramp Up Infra In 2 Yrs


http://ibnlive.in.com/generalnewsfeed/news/gujarat-tourism-to-spend-rs-5500-cr-to-ramp-up-infra-in-2-yrs/947858.html

08 January 2012

Mumbai:
Gujarat Tourism, which is holding the 22nd international kite festival between January 10 and 14, said that it has lined up Rs 5,500 crore to ramp up the infrastructure of 37 projects in the next two years. "We have got Rs 5,500 crore budget allocation to develop our infrastructure in next two years for 37 projects. These include an artificial lake at Saputara and developing a Buddhist circuit in the state," Tourism Corporation of Gujarat (TCGL) Chairman Kamlesh Patel told PTI here. TCGL is also spending another Rs 170 to develop 14 new beach resorts in the state by June this year, he said adding, "The work is already in progress and we are hoping to develop these beaches by June 2012."

The state, which saw around 2 crore tourists in FY11, expects over 2.25 crore visitors, including foreign and domestic travellers, in FY12, he said. "Overall, we are expecting more than 2.92 crore visitors, a growth of 30 per cent, to the state in FY13. Among the overseas visitors, we expect a growth of 17-22 per cent during the next fiscal," he said. People from eight states and 23 countries are going to participate in the International Kite Festival this month. When asked if the state tourism sector will face a negative impact due to the global economic crisis, Patel said, that since Gujarat is mostly visited by tourists from the US and Asia, it would not be much affected.

The TCGL is also exploring new geographies like South Africa to promote Gujarat tourism. "There is a lot of potential in South Africa. We are exploring promotional activities there to attract tourists to our state," he added. On the domestic front, he said, Gujarat is mostly visited by people from the adjoining states, the southern states and West Bengal. The state is aggressively marketing all its festivals, including the Tarnetar festival, Rann Ustav, monsoon and Navratri festivals, etc, to attract tourists to the state. "The service sector generates highest employment. We are aggressively promoting the state tourism, which has varied offerings to cater to different tastes," he said.