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Tourism industry has overcome economic slowdown: Govt

India's travel and tourism industry has overcome the global economic slowdown and foreign tourist arrival is increasing, Union Minister of State for Tourism Sultan Ahmed said.

business Updated: Aug 02, 2010 21:50 IST

India's travel and tourism industry has overcome the global economic slowdown and foreign tourist arrival is increasing, Union Minister of State for Tourism Sultan Ahmed said on Monday.

"The tourism industry in the country, along with other trades, felt the effect of economic downturn since 2008, but it has been overcome...foreign tourist arrival is increasing," Ahmed told a gathering at the historic Town Hall here to mark the end of the three-day Travel and Tourism Fair.

The visa on arrival facility had been extended to citizens of several countries like Singapore, New Zealand, Luxemburg and Switzerland apart from many of the Commonwealth countries, Ahmed said.

"This has yielded good response among tourists and travel operators, and we are interacting with the Union Home Ministry to introduce the facility to more countries," he said.

The minister, however, emphasised that the backbone of the country's tourism industry was domestic tourism. "We have about 500 million domestic tourists crisscrossing the country every year."