Optimistically Tourism Sector- Union Budget for 2018

Whether you are a travel enthusiast or a person form the tourism sector, then the union budget for 2018-19 has certain important components for you to record. With prime attention on agriculture, the Finance Minister Mr. Arun Jaitley presented the union budget for 2018-19 pointing out India has the fastest growing economy in the world. 

Commenting on the budget allocation on tourism sector, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said that developing tourism, particularly in India’s remote north-eastern states, is one of his top priorities. 

The Union Budget 2018-19 allocated an amount of Rs 2,150 crore to the Ministry of Tourism, which is a21 per cent jump from the current fiscal.

India’s identity as a tourist cordial destination will be enhanced with the initiatives of raising the airport capacity by five times, by the announcement of a special scheme to address air pollution in Delhi/NCR, with the steps taken to improve rail infrastructure and the development of suburban railway networks in cities like Mumbai and  Bengaluru.

Under the Smart City programme  Ninety-nine cities were selected, and if these cities are developed fully it is sure to attract more tourists.Government would also develop 10 popular tourist destinations into iconic and model destinations, involving infrastructure and skill development, development of technology, and attracting private investment in branding and marketing, which would again boost the sector. The government will also upgrade the 100 Adarsh  Monuments of the Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) which would be done under the National Heritage City Augmentation scheme of the government. The government will also encourage investment in sea plane activities to attract more investments in the sector. 

To improve connectivity and tourism at the north eastern state Mr. Finance Minister announced to construct a tunnel under the ‘Sela Pass’ between Tawang  and West Kameng Districts of Arunachal Pradesh.

The government also emphasised on promotion and publicity in this budget, with an amount of Rs 454 Crore earmarked for overseas promotion, registering a 52 per cent increase over the current fiscal’s allocation.

The ministry was granted Rs 1,776.4 crore for the current fiscal. Infrastructure projects were granted Rs 1,330 crore in this budget, a 16 per cent jump from Rs 1,145 crore set aside last year. Within these projects, integrated development of tourist circuits has been allocated Rs 1,100 crore, up from Rs 950 crore in the current fiscal. The Pilgrimage Rejuvenation and Spiritual Augmentation (PRASAD) scheme was given Rs 150 crore as compared to Rs 100 crore in the last budget announcement. Domestic publicity for tourism for the next fiscal has also received 50 per cent more funds with Rs 589.24 crore set aside for the same.

In the forthcoming federal budget India is planning to cut taxes on travel and tourism by giving more incentives to the $210 billion sector with a hope to boost economic growth and create more jobs.

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