Sunday, May 19, 2024
PTDC and World Bank organize workshop on National Tourism Competitive Index for Pakistan

PTDC and World Bank organize workshop on National Tourism Competitive Index for Pakistan

Pakistan Tourism Development Corporation (PTDC) and The World Bank (WB) jointly organized a workshop in Islamabad on National Tourism Competitive Index (NTCI) for Pakistan. The workshop was attended by relevant federal and provincial stakeholders, private sector, industry experts and the academia.
Tourism remains a priority sector for the government and is identified as one of the key drivers of economic growth. It is estimated that investments in travel and tourism sector can generate over half a million new (direct and induced) jobs over the next five years across the country.
Pakistan currently ranks 121st out of 140 economies in the 2019 ‘International Tourism Competitiveness Index’ (ITCI) of the World Economic Forum (WEF). Going forward, the country aspires to improve its ranking considering the strides that Pakistan’s tourism industry has taken in recent years to improve tourism infrastructure and connectivity, tourist safety and overall hospitality industry standards. There has been renewed interest by the international investors in Pakistan’s Tourism and Hospitality sector due to the uptick in domestic tourism accompanied by improvements in regulatory and policy framework. In order for the country to develop and manage destinations, preserve its heritage and promote responsible tourism, the center and provinces need to partner with academia and private sector. Meanwhile, establishment of National Tourism Competitive Index (NTCI) and an action plan for achieving the NTCI indicators could contribute positively towards improvement in Pakistan’s ranking on the ITCI.
The work on NTCI’s development has so far involved consultations with the relevant public and private sector entities and the workshop presented the proposed NTCI framework to the participants. The participants also discussed the roles and responsibilities of various stakeholders to ensure the implementation of NTCI and associated action plan.
Speaking on the occasion, Managing Director PTDC, Mr. Aftab Ur Rehman Rana reaffirmed government’s commitment towards enhancement of sustainable tourism development and said, ‘PTDC’s collaboration with the WB on developing NTCI will allow the government to collect, monitor and report valuable data, which will strengthen the tourism sector’s ability to show evidence backed progress while enabling the authorities to make informed policy decisions”.
Talking about the activity, Ms. Kiran Afzal, Senior Private Sector Specialist of the WB said, “World Bank’s partnership with the government on this crucial activity will help realise our collective vision of making Pakistan a destination of choice for tourists from around the world while offering diverse tourism experiences to the domestic travelers”. Mr. Gabi Afram, Practice Manager of the WB’s Finance and Competitiveness Global Practice also conveyed that the institution will continue its support to strengthen tourism sector planning, product offering and resilience of the value chains through its ongoing investment project financing in Punjab and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa.
Later on the team of consultants presented their findings on the development of NTCI for Pakistan and get feedback from the participants of workshop on various aspects of its framework and action plan.
The workshop ended with a note of thanks from the Managing Director, PTDC.

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