Set up land bank for tourism projects, Sahay tells Kerala

August 20th, 2011 - 10:21 pm ICT by IANS  

Kollam (Kerala), Aug 20 (IANS) Union Tourism Minister Subodh Kant Sahay Saturday called upon Kerala to create a dedicated land bank for developing tourism projects besides framing investor- and people-friendly policies to explore development of virgin areas in the state.

“If the state cannot create the land bank required because of its particular circumstances, it should give incentives like tax relief and cut in power tariffs to the private players to find out land and develop projects,” said Sahay, addressing the second Southern Regional Conference of Tourism Ministers which began here Saturday.

The two-day meeting, being attended by tourism ministers from Kerala, Tamil Nadu and Puducherry, also decided to create a southern regional council with ministers and senior officials as members to sort out bilateral issues and hold regular meetings.

Kerala Tourism Minister A.P. Anilkumar said the state was giving stress on responsible and sustainable tourism projects and was the first in the country to implement a successful model of responsible tourism.

“By synergising the private and public sector capabilities, the state was giving priority to develop infrastructure through private-public-partnerships models,” he said.

Addressing a press conference later, Sahay said the central government was targeting to double the current flow of inbound tourists in the next five years time and each state was being given a task to achieve this national target.

“The centre and states will extend infrastructure while the revenue-generating projects will be implemented on PPP (public-private partnership) mode. We look to extend skill development to five crore more people during the next Five Year Plan period,” he said.

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