Itanagar: The Arunachal Pradesh Tour Operators’ Association (APTOA) is all set to organise a three-day ‘Travel Congress’ to promote and develop the tourism sector of the state.
APTOA president John Panye said the Congress will be held at Kabu and Kamba villages of the West Siang district from January 19 to 22.
The programme will focus on rural tourism and a holistic approach to sustainable growth, he said while addressing a press conference here.
Panye said to ensure empowering rural youths, the association will be organising plenary sessions, panel discussions, exchange of ideas and experiences, etc., to make the congress effective and more meaningful.
Programmes like the familiarisation of tour operators to the locals will also be held.
“We will also ensure the growth of local tourism in a sustainable way without harming the people, culture, and nature in a holistic approach. Also, the Siang region has a high potential in the tourism sector. Hence, we are focusing on the district,” he said.
The event will also witness the participation of tourism stakeholders from East Siang, West Siang, Siang, Upper Siang, Shi-Yomi, Leparada, and Lower Siang districts. There will be minimum participation from other states as the congress is focused on promoting local tourism and providing a platform to unemployed youths in the tourism and hospitality sector.
Panye said the tourism sector of the state suffered for a couple of years due to the Covid-19 pandemic. Now that the pandemic has subsided, the state will witness huge tourism growth, he said while adding that the APTOA will ensure that the entire congress is held following the Covid guidelines issued by the state government.
“Choosing Kabu and Kamba villages for the event is to bring the erstwhile Siang district on one platform, and also highlight the district as a nature-based adventure tourism hotspot,” he said, adding that the district has much to offer in terms of culture, culinary, river events, handicraft, etc.
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Panye further appealed to the state government to immediately constitute a State Tourism Board (STB) to strengthen the tourism sector to generate employment and revenue for the youths as well as for the state.
He said that a state tourism policy is a need for the proper growth of tourism in the state.
Instead of the existing Arunachal Tourism Society, the state government should establish the STB by taking on board tourism professionals, stakeholders, and government officials.
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