Tourism has potential to create 25 million jobs by 2016: Sahai

Tourism has potential to create 25 million jobs by 2016: Sahai

Highlighting India's tourism potential, Tourism Minister Subodh Kant Sahai today said the sector has the capacity to create 25 million jobs in the coming years.

"India has the potential market for tourism and has set a target to achieve 12 per cent growth in tourism sector by 2016. If this is achieved, we will be able to create 25 million additional jobs," Sahai said while inaugurating the Indian pavilion at ITB, the tourism fair in Berlin.

He said in order to achieve the target, the ministry has already taken concrete steps to increase tourist traffic to India in the coming years.

Aiming at enhancing its reach across the globe, Sahai said it has been decided to appoint marketing representatives in other countries where it does not have tourism offices.

Currently, Tourism Ministry has 14 overseas offices including in New York, Toronto, Frankfurt, Dubai and Paris.

Emphasising that tourism has developed into one of world's largest industry, he said it is a major engine for economic growth. "Indian tourism continues to grow, both in volume and value. It has registered a growth of 11.8 per cent foreign tourist arrivals in the country in 2010," he said.

He said that an Inter-Ministerial Coordination Committee for the tourism sector has been set up to facilitate resolution of inter-ministerial issues involved in the development of tourism in the country as well as the issues raised by the industry associations.

Sahai also stated that his ministry will hold its own National Travel Mart titled Global Travel Mart India in the year 2012-13.

Referring to the target of one billion tourists by 2012 set by UNWTO, the Minister said India is aiming to fetch 1 per cent of them to double its foreign tourist arrivals this year.

India's foreign tourist arrivals have crossed six million in 2011 and is expected to touch seven million this year.