PESHAWAR: Senior Minister Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Mohammad Atif Khan has disclosed that the provincial government has selected 20 tourists’ destinations for immediate development of which ten have been shortlisted and master plan for five is almost ready.
Addressing a seminar “Way Forward for the Tourism Sector of KP, Launching of KP Tourism Sector Analysis” in Islamabad Friday, he said that the Tourism Task Force so constituted recently will be meeting the Prime Minister on November 7th while the Chief Minister KP, next week so that the full support and backing of both the federal and provincial governments is availed of and they are taken on board with regard to the development of tourism in the Province.
Mohammad Atif Khan, who holds the portfolio of tourism, also disclosed that historic Qilla Bala Hisar in Peshawar will soon be opened for tourists for which the relevant authorities including the Corpse Commander Peshawar had already been taken on board.
He said that as many as 35 government owned rest houses previously limited to the government functionaries have been opened to the public tourists while more such facilities are been taken from different Provincial Government Departments for opening by the Tourism Department for tourists.
The seminar was participated by a large number of tourism experts and tour operator while the Country Director World Bank Pakistan Illango Patchamuthu and Tourism Specialist Wouter Schalken addressed it besides others.
Findings and Salient features of the studies “Key Reforms for Tourism Industry” and “KP Tourism Sector Analysis” were also presented on the occasion. These studies were later thoroughly discussed in different penal discussions followed by question-answers sessions.
Atif Khan on this occasion also said that Golf Club Kabal in Swat will also be opened for tourists while a Specialized Tourism Police Force will be recruited to help, guide and assist the tourists in the Province. With regard to the Hospitality Management School Swat, the minister said that it is been upgraded to the Center of Excellence in Hospitality.
He also disclosed that an independent Tourism Authority is being established to facilitate both domestic and foreign tourists.
He said by developing and harnessing the tourism sector, on the one hand, revenue for the Province will be generated while it will contribute a lot to the creation of jobs and employment opportunities in the Province on the other hand.
In respect of the non-availability of hotels facilities in Kumrat Dir, the Senior Minister Tourism said that every effort is being made to encourage private sector establish such businesses there.