KATHMANDU, Dec 13: Sri Lankan Ambassador to Nepal Swarna Perera has spoken of the need to forge a common viewpoint for the promotion of tourism between Nepal and Sri Lanka.
At an interaction organized by Trekking Agencies Association of Nepal (TAAN) on Tourism between Nepal and Sri Lanka here today, Sri Lankan Ambassador Perera pointed out the need for establishing direct air connectivity between the two countries and to accelerate the promotional events boosting tourism.
Stating that Sri Lanka and Nepal shared an intimate tie from the cultural and religious point of view. The Sri Lankan Envoy stated that both countries should be active in emotional cooperation for the mutual benefits.
She held the belief that the number of Sri Lankan tourists visiting Nepal and vice versa would bolster if the tour operators from both countries are convened and publicized the tourist destinations.
Around 50,000 Sri Lankans, most of the Buddhist faith, annually visit Nepal, the land of Gautam Buddha. Sri Lanka is a country with around 74 percent of the Buddhist population.
Nepal recorded 57,527 Sri Lankan tourists visiting Nepal in 2016 while in 2017, a total of 45,371 Sri Lankans visited Nepal. It is 21 percent that the former year.
According to the Nepal Tourism Board, the number of Nepali students visiting Sri Lanka in 2016 stood at 12,838 while 5,144 Nepalis were recorded to have visited Sri Lanka in 2017, a 59 percent of decline compared to the previous year.
TAAN President Nawaraj Dahal said that Sri Lanka and Nepal could take mutual benefits through the tourism.
In attendance at the discussion were former Minister for Tourism Yankila Sherpa, TAAN former President Chandra Rijal and tourism entrepreneur Mohan Lamsal among others who echoed with the Sri Lankan Envoy and batted for a common viewpoint to promote tourism between the two countries.
They viewed that the promotional events would aid to the Visit Nepal 2020, the government's campaigned aimed to attract 2 million tourists in 2020. RSS