The Sri Lanka Tourism Development Authority has initiated a program to certify eating places in the tourist zones in the country named ‘Tourist Friendly Eating Places’ and the objective of this program is to upgrade the basic standards of those places with facilities, hygiene conditions and service standards.
Arrangements have been made to launch the certification scheme for the eating places, in collaboration with the Ministry of Health, the local authority of the respective area and the Ind-Expo Certification Ltd.
The first such places will be launched by the Sri Lanka Tourism Development Authority today at 3.00 p.m. at BB Café, Matara Road in Habaraduwa. There will be two types of certification of these places with ‘A’ and ‘B’ grades.
The launchi ceremony will be held under the patronage of Minister of Tourism Development and Christian Religious Affairs John Amaratunga and Deputy Minister of Tourism Development and Christian Religious Affairs Arundika Fernando.
Parallel to launching the certification scheme for earting places, the SLTDA has taken the initiative to absorb informal tourist establishments into the formal sector. As per the research conducted, it is found that many tourist establishments in popular tourists zones are not registered under SLTDA.
This project of absorbing the informal sector into the formal sector has commenced at popuar tourist zones in the country, namely the Unawatuna and Hikkaduwa areas. Furthermore, this project of the SLTDA project is to cover other popular tourist zones in the island in the future in order to satisfy tourists with a quality product.
“It is fascinating to see how the tourism industry of Sri Lanka is moving forward with positive changes under the fresh administration in the country which has reposed huge confidence in the economic capacity of tourism. As per the agenda of the newly established Government, drawing attention to developing an attractive tourism zone in the southern part of the country has encouraged the SLTDA to initiate the launch of certification of eating places and absorption of the informal sector to the formal sector from the Unawatuna and Hikkaduwa areas,” P.M. Withana, Acting Chairman of the Sri Lanka Tourism Development Authority said.
“When considering tourist demand it is important to maintain required standards and quality in service. With sun and beaches being the first preference among most foreign tourists and sea bathing being the activity most engaged in while tourists are in Sri Lanka, the southern part of the country is most popular among tourists visting the country and is the best location to start quality services to cater to tourists,” Sri Lanka Tourism Development Authority Director General Malaraj B. Kiriella stated.