Top Resa 2015: Sri Lanka makes a mark with culture and heritage theme, draws strong footfall

Monday, 12 October 2015 00:00 -     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}

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The 37th edition of Top Resa closed its door on a very positive note for Sri Lanka with the Sri Lanka Pavilion receiving many accolades but more importantly the theme ‘Culture and Heritage’ set the stage for the high footfall in the Sri Lanka pavilion. 

The Sri Lanka stand at Top Resa was very busy on the first three days, implying that interest in the country lives. The sideline discussion where many deals were agreed was the highlight of the 2015 edition. Starting from three opportunities for movie based marketing of the destination to two large conferences that will be staged in Sri Lanka made the difference in this year’s edition, said Market Head for France at SLTPB Sarangi Thilakasiri.

Thirty-six senior tourism officials led by the Deputy Minister for Tourism Development Arundika Fernando made the strong Sri Lankan delegation together with Thilakasiri. 

The presence of the Ambassador of Sri Lanka in France Tilak Ranaviraja helped move the meetings from awareness to following through for closure. Sri Lanka is targeting a 100,000 plus visitors from France in the near future, said Sri Lanka Tourism in a communiqué.

Deputy Minister Arundika Fernando said: “On 8 January, the people of the Democratic Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka voted in a new Government that promised good governance, financial responsibility of public funds, equality of development, religion harmony, respect to human rights and inclusive development and we have already started delivering this promise to the people of Sri Lanka.”

“We now want to understand the thinking of the private sector better and there by aggressive develop the tourism promotional agenda in the key markets. I commend the Sri Lanka Tourism Promotions Bureau and the private sector for the work done as Sri Lanka’s tourism is giving leadership to the country with a 35.9% growth and cumulative performance at 18.8% which is above the organic growth which means strategy is infusing the visitor numbers.”

Sri Lanka Tourism Promotions Bureau Chairman Dr. Rohantha Athukorala opined: “I congratulate the private sector for the performance whilst we must address quality issues of the booming uncontrolled sector given that we must deliver the typical Sri Lankan care that we have been known globally. We must attract the $250 dollar tourist so that we make the industry financially sustainable. Sri Lanka winning two key French travel and tour operator conferences to be staged in Sri Lanka is strategy on course whilst ‘bachelor’ finally taking shape for the first movie based marketing of the country is once again strategy on course to objectives.”