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“Lanka could increase tourist arrival targets by 10%”

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Sri Lanka will be able to increase their tourist arrival targets by a minimum of 10% with the offering of free visa on arrival for seven countries, said President Hotels Association of Sri Lanka (THASL) M. Shanthikumar.

In an interview with Daily News Business Shanthikumar said this will definitely have a positive impact for the Indian arrivals as well.

“it will also lead to attracting more travelers to Jaffna as well from the flights taking from Chennai. Cabinet on Monday gave approval subsequent to a request made by Minister of Tourism Harin Fernando to grant approval to waive visa fees to tourists from seven countries, India, China, Russia, Malaysia, Japan, Indonesia, and Thailand. This will be under a pilot project to be carried out until March 31, 2024. The Tourism Ministry further said that the purpose of free tourist visas was to attract more tourists to Sri Lanka and these five countries account for the highest number of arrivals.

ShanthiKumar also said that though the government may lose some revenue with the visa fee collection the economic impact from this would compensate that by a greater extent.

An official from the Airport Aviation said that the move will pave the way for existing airlines especially from these five destinations increasing capacity and also new airlines adding Colombo to their radar.” We expect more budget airlines to cash on this free visa offer.”

Indigo, a budget airline that is flying to Colombo from India has already announced plans to operate Chennai Jaffna flight soon.

Meanwhile Tourist arrivals from October 1 to 22 was 77,763 and total arrivals stood at 1,094,019.

The post “Lanka could increase tourist arrival targets by 10%” appeared first on DailyNews.

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