PESHAWAR: Provincial Senior Minister Muhammad Atif Khan has said that there are great potential for tourism in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and Gilgit-Baltistan and foreign investors can get handsome benefit from these opportunities in the sector.
The senior minister, who also has the portfolio of Sports, Tourism, Archaeology, Culture, Museums and Youth Affairs, said that concerted efforts were being made to introduce Khyber Pakhtunkhwa as a tourism brand to the world to attract more tourists and visitors to the province.
He said that there was a dire need to work on different strategies to further explore and exploit these potential for the well-being of the local people and attract tourists to the scenic resorts of the province.
He was speaking at the ITB Berlin Travel Trade Show in Germany on Thursday.
Mr. Jehan Zeb CEO Zeb Travel and Gilgit-Baltistan Tourism Minister Fida Khan also attended the mega tourism event.
General Manager Tourism Corporation Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (TCKP), Sajjad Hameed, and officials from Gilgit-Baltistan accompanied the senior minister during the tour to represent Pakistan at the mega show.
The TCKP stall attracted a large number of tourists and visitors in the ITB Berlin Show. The visitors evinced keen interest in the items displayed at the stall.
Senior Minister Atif Khan said that millions of tourists and visitors from across the globe had visited Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and Gilgit-Baltistan during the last tourist season owing to the restoration of lasting peace and robust development in tourism sector.
“We are working on a number of projects including creating job and business opportunities for the youth so they could earn a decent living for their families,” Atif Khan told the participants.
Referring to the stall established by the TCKP, the senior minister said that it was meant to showcase the tourism potential of KP and Gilgit-Baltistan at the ITB Berlin Travel Trade Show in Germany and attract tourists and investors to Pakistan.
He said that Hazara and Malakand divisions and Chitral district had great tourism destinations.
“We have devised a comprehensive strategy for the development of 20 new tourist attractions and several ski resorts in the province,” the senior minister said, adding, “The Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Window” would be established in different countries on the pattern of the “China Window Centre” to highlight the culture of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa.
He said that the federal government had introduced a new visa policy to promote culture and tourism. “The people of other counties will get online and on-arrival visa facilities under the new policy,” he explained.
TCKP General Manager Sajjad Hameed said that participation in such travel and trade show was meant to highlight the opportunities of tourism and investment in KP and elsewhere in Pakistan in the tourism sector.
He said Chitral had a treasure trove of tourism potential and Kalash culture that needed to be explored and brought to forth to the international community.