Sri Lanka Tourism is aiming to welcome 1.5 million tourists in 2023, according to the Minister of Tourism and Lands Harin Fernando at an event held in the Ministry of Tourism. Optimistically, the Minister is expecting a revenue of USD 2.8 billion from Tourism this year. He recalled that when he took over the ministry last year (2022), the last tourist had already left the country, however, the revised target of 700,000 million arrivals was achieved along with a foreign revenue of Rs.1.2 million.
Fernando highlighted that a new tourism strategy would be implemented in order to align visitor demand and supply-side experiences. The strategy will focus on addressing existing gaps in terms of planning, regulation, value addition, market research, stakeholder coordination, skills development, investment attraction and sustainable natural resource management. The Minister expressed confidence that these measures would help to successfully attain the tourism goals set for 2023.
“In 2023, we will project Sri Lanka into a higher value tourism destination by capturing its full growth potential, whilst safeguarding and prioritizing the sustainability of its natural and cultural assets.”
He further points out that
• Make a genuine effort to convert the tourism industry to become the leading sector of economic growth
• New players both locally and globally investing in Sri Lankan hospitality sector
• Several upcoming hotel projects to complete in 2023
• Courtyard by Marriott opened in Colombo last month
• Increase the room capacity and create a considerable increase in tourism related direct & indirect job opportunities
• All citizens must unite together to share the country’s extraordinarily diverse and authentic story with the rest of the world