The final draft of the Sri Lanka National Policy of Tourism


The final draft of the Sri Lanka National Policy of Tourism (NPT) was presented to the tourism industry stakeholders this morning (Wednesday 15th) in Colombo. 


The workshop was jointly organized by the Sri Lanka Tourism Development Authority (SLTDA) and the UNDP Sri Lanka.  Ministry of Tourism and Land Secretary Chulananda Perera and Director General Suranga Vithanage, SLTDA Chairman Priantha Fernando, Chairman Sri Lanka Tourism Promotions Authority (SLTPA) Chalaka Gajabahu, Chairman Sri Lanka Institute of Tourism and Hotel Management (SLITHM) Shirantha Peiris, and Officials of the line ministries and government departments, representatives from the UNDP and industry stakeholders were present at this workshop.     


Director General Suranga Vithanage delivering the welcome address stated that the work on drafting the NPT was initiated in early 2021 and thereafter passed through three committees; Working Committee, Inter-Ministerial Committee, and Provincial Committee, which was then presented to the Ministry of Finance, and the industry stakeholders. The first draft was then published on the media websites, put through validation workshops and many meetings to obtain the input from all stakeholders and other relevant parties, before arriving at the current final draft.


Giving the keynote address, the Secretary Chulananda Perera stated that “throughout the history, much effort has been put together to draft policies but up to now not many have seen light, in being implemented or being completed. He noted that due to this many people have a negative outlook towards policy framework, and as a result the development is not progressive as policies lack continuity through various governments. He highlighted the need for this mindset to change to ensure progressive development as a nation. Speaking on the Prime Minister’s instructions on developing an immersive plan to attract more tourists by highlighting the value additions which Sri Lanka has to offer including the cultural aspects being covered.”  He also emphasized that although he was giving the keynote address the most suitable was the chairman SLTDA given his vast experience in the field of tourism. 


During the address made by  SLTDA Chairman, it was  stated that, "The proposed national policy in Sri Lanka on Tourism, is coherent, integrated and aligned with the relevant sectorial policies whilst also recognizing tourism’s trans-sectoral nature needed to achieve sustainable growth and a more inclusive sector for all stakeholders."  


SLTDA Chairman Fernando was hopeful that the participants at the technical sessions which commenced immediately following the inauguration of this event would discuss the draft in detail and finalize the policy today enabling the NPT to be submitted for the Cabinet approval.  


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