- Minister Ranatunga gives officials 2 days to submit short-term roadmap
The Government is stepping up efforts to kick-start the battered tourism industry with new promotions to attract international travellers, subject to health guidelines.
This was revealed during a special meeting chaired by Tourism Minister Prasanna Ranatunga yesterday, after he reviewed the progress of initiatives taken to accelerate the revival of the industry amidst the COVID-19 pandemic.
As an immediate step, the Minister instructed Sri Lanka Tourism officials to prepare a short-term road map to attract tourists in the coming months.
A report in this regard detailing existing challenges, actions to be taken, promotion strategy with targeted countries, and packages to facilitate international tourists is to be presented to the Minister within two days.
Ranatunga has requested that officials incorporate stakeholder insights into the roadmap as well.
Tourism Ministry Secretary S. Hettiarachchi, Sri Lanka Tourism Development Authority (SLTDA) Director General Dhammika Wijayasingha, Sri Lanka Tourism Promotion Bureau (SLTPB) Acting Managing Director Madhubhani Perera, Acting Managing Director of the Tourism Promotion Bureau, SLTPB Director – Marketing Dushan Wickramasuriya, and members of the Tourism Advisory Committee Hiran Cooray and Chandra Wickramarasinghe were present at the meeting.
Ranatunga also denied allegations by the Opposition that the COVID-19 spread was due to the opening of the country for international travellers.
“The claims of the Opposition are completely false and misleading,” he stressed.
It was pointed out that none of the 183 tourists who were COVID-infected were exposed to the local community as they were in a bio-bubble.