Emphasizing on the potential of tourism which can lead to employment generation and better infrastructure, Hon’ble Chief Minister of Andhra Pradesh, Shri N. Chandrababu Naidu pitched for developing an ecosystem in India which is favourable for tourism. Speaking at the sidelines of the CII Summit, Hon’ble CM urged for more focus on tourism in the next Union Budget.
India is blessed with a diverse cuisine, culture and heritage and therefore enjoys an advantageous position in the global tourism map. However the state of infrastructure in the country is acting as a roadblock towards allowing India to leverage its full potential.
Expecting the industry to grow around 14 – 15% in the current financial year, Shri Naidu stressed on the need to further augment the hotel room capacity. He also highlighted on how tourism opens the door for additional employment especially in the service sector such as hotels, resorts etc.
“In India we have so many advantages, we have to build an environment and ecosystem which is more conducive for tourism. As tourism grows, the economy of the country will also grow” said Shri N. Chandrababu Naidu, Hon’ble Chief Minister of Andhra Pradesh.
Banking on its unique temples, pristine beaches, stunning caves and hill stations, scenic backwaters, and thrilling wildlife sanctuaries, the sunrise state of Andhra Pradesh continued to attract visitors from across the globe and registered 1218.3 lakh tourist arrivals in 2015 which is a jump of 30% over 2014.
With a long term envision of becoming the most preferred destination, Andhra Pradesh has already rolled out Tourism Policy 2015–2020 offering a number of attractive policy incentives for setting up tourism infrastructure projects in the state. Its fiscal incentives such as automatic land conversion, 100% reimbursement of registration & stamp duty, reduced rate of 5% VAT for all tourism projects etc. and non-fiscal Incentives such as Single Desk Approvals in 21 days, special incentives for all investments over USD 33 million etc. has already won the government praise and accolades from across the industry. Owing to its investor friendly policies Andhra Pradesh was ranked 2nd in Ease of Doing Business by World Bank (2014-15).
The Andhra Pradesh government which has recently unveiled an investor-friendly land lease policy has an available land bank of 1,500 acres and a host of other investment routes in tourism infrastructure projects across all of its 5 major tourist hubs of Visakhapatnam, Konaseema, Amravati, Rayalseema and Tirupati. According to a study by HVS, the state which has an existing room inventory of approximately 7085 rooms has further absorption potential of about 18,150 hotel rooms.
Shri Srikanth Nagulapalli, I.A.S., Principal Secretary to Government, Tourism & Culture, said “Andhra Pradesh is a land of opportunities. We have some of the finest tourist destinations in the country and the scope of investment is also plenty. Our investor-friendly policies in itself make a strong appeal towards the investors to come and be a part of this growth journey.”
To showcase the various destinations of the state and its offerings, Andhra Pradesh Tourism has put up a stall at Vigyan Bhavan, New Delhi during the ongoing CII Summit. The exhibition stall was inaugurated by Shri Vinod Zutshi, Secretary, Ministry of Tourism, Government of India among the august presence of other notable dignitaries.