World Tourism Day being marked today
ISLAMABAD: President Dr Arif Alvi and Prime Minister Imran Khan have said that promotion of tourist activities in rural areas could help in increasing the volume of national economy and putting the country on the road to prosperity and development as Pakistan has limitless potential for tourism.
“The sector is not just a leading source of employment, particularly for different segments of rural society especially for youth and women but also provides opportunities for regional integration and socio-economic inclusion for the most remote areas,” the president said in a message on “World Tourism Day” being observed today (September 27).
He said that it was a matter of great pleasure that Pakistan was joining hands with the rest of the world to celebrate the Day. The day is being celebrated every year under the patronage of the United Nations World Tourism Organisation (UNWTO), to foster awareness in the international community regarding the impact of tourism on society, culture and economic growth of a country. This year, the theme is “Tourism and Rural Development”.
The president said for a country like Pakistan where majority of the population was still living in rural areas, tourism could have a significant contribution in socio-economic development. The rural communities of Pakistan offered a unique natural and cultural heritage.
“It is a matter of great satisfaction for me that the federal and provincial governments are taking collective measures for development of tourist sites and promotion of tourism and all these efforts will contribute in transforming the tourism industry to become a major sector of national economy in the near future,” he said.
Meanwhile, Prime Minister Imran Khan has said that the various initiatives taken by the government of Pakistan for promotion of tourism were giving emphasis to development of rural areas.
“Several new destinations have been explored for tourists in rural areas of the country which is expected to uplift the economic and social status of local population,” he said in a message on the observance of “World Tourism Day”. He said today, they were celebrating the Day as a country that hosted some of the world’s most kook vistas and fascinating cultures.
The prime minister said the tourism sector provided impetus to economic development in rural areas, which was in dire need of economic activities.
Tourism not only helped in empowerment of rural communities by generating employment and boosting trade, but also enabled them to protect their heritage and allowed other people to experience their incredible cultures and traditions, he added. He further said placing rural development at the heart of tourism policies through education, investment, innovation, technology and employment transformed the livelihoods of millions and helped preserve the culture and environment.
The prime minister said he would like to inform the international community that the people of Pakistan were waiting for the tourists from around the globe anxiously to extend their hospitality for visiting their mountains, deserts, rivers, forests, and coasts.
“Pakistan has diverse landscapes from mountains to sea along with a dynamic history. Pakistan has limitless potential for tourism which the world has yet to discover,” he said.
Pakistan Tourism Development Corporation (PTDC) has been revamped to transform it to get its employees acquainted with the cutting edge technology In order to make Pakistan a known tourist destination.