Tourism backbone of economic stability: Mahmood

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Chief Minister Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Mahmood Khan has termed the tourism sector as the backbone for economic stability and said that the incumbent provincial government has initiated multiple development projects alongside necessary legislation to establish tourism sector as an industry. He added that in the last four years, substantial investment has been made with the sole purpose to provide state of the art facilities to national and international tourists and create livelihood opportunities for local people.

In a statement issued here from the Chief Minister’s secretariat, Mahmood Khan stated that the provincial government is going all out to promote tourism activities in the province adding that development projects coupled with institutional and legal framework have ensured substantial progress in attracting national and international tourists to Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. In order to promote, preserve and revive our traditional, cultural & religious heritage and to regulate tourism in the province, “Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Culture and Tourism Authority” has been established, he remarked.

According to the details, in the last four years, numerous steps have been taken for the development of tourism sector including establishment of special purpose development authorities for Kumrat, Kalash and Upper Swat with the aim to boost tourism activities at local level. Similarly, K.P Tourism Police has been introduced to facilitate tourists and ensure their security.

In order to provide state of the art tourism facilities and attract national and foreign tourists to Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, a project for the establishment of Ghanool, Mankyal and and Madaklasht integrated Tourism zones is in pipeline which is the first of its kind initiative of the provincial government. Furthermore, camping pods have been installed at 11 different tourists’ sites while establishment of camping pods at 10 other sites is also underway. In order to provide legal framework for the development of tourism sector on sustainable basis, legislations have been carried out including KP Tourism Act 2019, KP Government Rest Houses and Tourism properties (Development, Management and Regulation) Act 2020 and others.

Additionally, the Tourism, Sports, Culture, Youth Affairs, Museums and Archaeology department has been bifurcated into two separate departments to ensure effective management and focused efforts for boosting tourism activities in the province.