Wednesday, August 05, 2009

8,00,000 tourists projected in Sikkim by 2015

Gangtok, Aug 5 : An international consultancy firm has projected footfalls of at least 8,00,000 tourists annually in Sikkim by 2015 making the Himalayan State a major tourism centre.
Out of these projection, the firm, has put the numbers of international tourists to be around 34,000.

East Sikkim being the gateway to major tourism hotspots will be attracting more than 5,00,000 tourists annually by 2015, the consultancy firm representatives said while presenting the ‘developmental guide plans of Gangtok, Namchi, Geyzing and Mangan’, the headquarters of the four districts of the state.

The presentation for the stakeholders was made here yesterday at Chintan Bhavan, Gangtok which was attended by Chief Minister Pawan Chamling, Speaker K T Gyalsten, Cabinet minister, MLAs and a host of senior civil authorities.

While Presenting the tourism component of the urban renewal plan, the representatives said that keeping in mind the figures of tourists, there is a requirement of an additional 8753 rooms.

The tourism traffic in East Sikkim will remain high and as per the urban master plan for Gangtok, there is an urgent need to have larger and better managed hotels.
There is also a lack of quality eateries in Gangtok, the study noted.

The consultancy firm has also called for developing religious, eco-tourism and natural attractions, reviving the handicrafts and handlooms products and decentralisation of permit system to decongest Gangtok.
The company forecasted two more casinos in Gangtok.

All these aspects will be highlighted in the Tourism Master Plan report for Sikkim later this year, the consultancy said.

Regarding Namchi, the firm said that the South district is strong on religious and cultural activities.
The limitations of tourism facilities should be upgraded, it suggested and also highlighted the need for more tourism facilities and infrastructures in North and West districts.
--- UNI