India ranks at 34th position in the Travel and Tourism Competitiveness Index moving up from the 65th position in 2013, a World Economic Forum (WEF) report stated. The government is committed to making policies and programmes for the development and promotion of tourism. The year 2019 witnessed the same which the ministry taking several steps in this direction.
Reducing E-visa fees, decreasing GST rates on hotel room bookings and opening 120 new peaks for mountaineering are among the major highlights of the Tourism Ministry in 2019, government schemes such as Swadesh, Darshan, PRASHAD and UDAN were all undertaken excessively during the year. Ministry of Tourism in a recent statement declared that foreign tourist arrival in India had witnessed a growth of 3.23 per cent amounting to 96,69,633 travellers during January-November 2019.
A total number of 28 projects have been sanctioned amounting to INR 840.02 crore under the PRASHAD scheme. Further, the government-sanctioned 77 projects for development of thematic circuits for an amount of INR 6,035.70 crore till date under the Swadesh Darshan destinations is being undertaken under the ‘National Mission on Pilgrimage Rejuvenation and Spiritual, Heritage Augmentation Drive (PRASHAD) Scheme.
Indian still needs to work on enabling environmental sustainability and service infrastructure.
With India showing the greatest percentage of improvement to its overall Travel and Tourism Competitiveness Index (TTCI) score, which has helped it become the only lower-middle-income country in the top 35, India has many natural and cultural assets. The report by the World Economic Forum (WEF) further states that Thailand, Brazil and India- which are not high-income economies- also stand out in this quartile through their combination of rich natural and cultural resources and strong price competitiveness.
Competitive Countries in Travel and Tourism (2019)
— World Index (@theworldindex) December 25, 2019
Even though when compared to other global benchmarks, India also can add to price competitiveness to its roster of strengths, the country still needs to enhance its enabling environment (98th position), tourist service infrastructure(109th position) and environmental sustainability (128th position).
The 140 economies that were ranked were ranked in four sub-indexes: enabling environment, travel and tourism policy and enabling conditions, infrastructure, and natural and cultural resources. Together, these four sub-indexes include a total of 14 pillars, which are used to score a country’s overall travel and tourism competitiveness.