Written by Ch. Faisal Mahmood
With More than 10,000 companies from 184 countries, the world’s leading travel trade show, 2017 edition of ITB Berlin held, of course with much bigger participation & enthusiasm, though this time security challenges to the world of tourism were formidable. The strongest and laud message was delivered by the Secretary General of UNWTO that Tourism can transform our world and tolerance through Tourism can build better understanding in the world.
Negating the philosophy of isolationism and ill-conceived actions like travel bans which do not lead to increased security but just to grow tension and reduces the chances of building understanding by the interaction of the masses of different cast , creed, religions and regions.
He asked us all to remember the golden words of Mr. Antonio Guterres, “Beyond the measurable advances that tourism can make possible, it is also a bridge to better mutual understanding among people from all walks of life.”
ITB Berlin is considered as the best platform to display your travel and tourism related products. As we mention earlier also that Pakistan, endowed with unique heritage from history and in archeological sites, vibrant with diverse culture with roots in antiquity; Pakistan, known and visited until the beginning year of this century as a multifaceted Special Interest Destination; Pakistan, valued as a lucrative outbound market is not being projected as a spectacular inbound tourists Market. We are not sure but just like some previous years, we haven’t heard from any source that Pakistan is being represented as tourist destination at ITB Berlin.
This is one direct result of our tourism industry basking in years of democracy, which, among other things, made sure that there is no federal Pakistan identity for such event organizers to notice, to contact, to deal with. Such is the consequence of the unthinking removal of the Concurrent List from our Constitution.
The world’s most affluent countries, endowed already with economic strength from their vast – heavy, technological and lethal – industries and very high per capita income, were soliciting Tourism; ‘complete visitor economy’ is the in-thing now as the mantra for economic progress.
In only two decades our immediate west has transformed from desert poverty and religious pilgrimage to a whole region of vibrant tourist destination and management hub for trans-national hospitality and aviation corporations. Shows how national spirit can use money and professionals to better advantage.
Holiday Weekly time and again asks the governments to understand fully the importance and value of Tourism Promotion for bringing back to our country the economic strength, social contentment, investment climate and diplomatic weight which we actually had in the previous decade.¡