3rd Tech Valley Conference 2018: KP’s tourism potential highlighted

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3rd Tech Valley Conference 2018: KP’s tourism potential highlighted

ABBOTTABAD: Speakers at a day-long conference on Sunday hailed the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa government for taking tangible steps for the promotion of tourism and termed the engagement of private sector a positive initiative in that direction.

“The KP government initiatives are yielding results, as a record number of tourists and visitors have visited the scenic places of the province during the last four and half years despite militancy and law and order situation,” Asad Umar, the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) leader and Member National Assembly said while speaking as chief guest at the 3rd Tech Valley Conference here.

Titled as ‘3Ts – Travel, Tourism & Tech’, the conference was arranged by the Tourism Corporation Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (TCKP) to highlight the potential of tourism in the province.

TCKP Managing Director Mushtaq Ahmad Khan, General Manager Sajjad Hameed, Tech Valley Abbottabad Chief Executive Officer Umar Farooq, Hashoo Group Chief Marketing Officer Lashley A. Pulsipher, Ignite Group Chief Executive Officer Yousaf Hussain, Careem Pakistan Managing Director Junaid Iqbal, Director British Council Pakistan Rosemary Hilhorst, CEO Frontier Medical College Abbottabad, Dr Asad Jamil and others attended the conference.

Asad Umar said Khyber Pakhtunkhwa was gifted with abundant natural beauty of lush green valleys, snow-capped mountains, deserts, rivers, landscapes, rich cultural heritage, springs, streams and serene spots.

He said now scores of people come from abroad and across the country to visit Khyber Pakhtunkhwa to experience the beauty it has to offer.

The speakers discussed the ways and means for sustainable tourism for development.

They said tourism was a key driver for socio-economic progress. The importance of tourism cannot be denied even in the today’s modern world, they said.

“The world is at the zenith of industrial, scientific and technological development but despite that people are in search of finding solace, calm, rest of mind, leisure and entertainment. And all these could be found only in natural beauty and beautiful places,” the speakers elaborated.

Highlighting various projects, TCKP MD Mushtaq Ahmad Khan said that adventure tourism and adventure sports activities were being organised in the province.

“The aim is to lure investors who can build new infrastructure to arrange more creative activities,” he said, adding, “The TCKP had arranged rafting at Indus River, events of paragliding in Nowshera district and zip-lining in Peshawar.

He said the participation of people was overwhelming. More events are soon to be organized in Swat, Kalam, Charsadda, Mardan, Hazara and other destinations, he added.

The official said under the integrated project measures had been taken for developing tourism infrastructure, institutional development and capacity-building of tourism industry services.

He said the installation of chairlifts in Swat and Galiyat had been completed while placement of quality benches and dustbins at tourist spots had been placed at scenic places throughout the province.

The official said a project had already been launched for installation of camping pods in tourist resorts while Directorate of Tourist Service (DTS) had stared work across the province. The DTS would soon upload its data of hotels, restaurants rent-A car and travel agencies online.

He said it will help promote tourism in the province besides facilitating the tourists to get data of hotels, restaurants and travel agencies online.

The official said the initiative would also help an official of the DTS to locate a hotel, restaurant or a travel agency through Global Information System (GIS) and Global Positioning System (GPS) and obtain the required information.