Delivering the inaugural speech at the 2nd ASEAN-India Youth Summit in Guwahati, Union Minister K J Alphons on Sunday said the country’s tourism sector fetched USD 234 billion revenue last year.
Tourism registering a growth of over 19 per cent, he said the country was ranked third in the tourism sector, according to the 2018 report of the World Travel and Tourism Council (WTTC).
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The minister said “Last year, India generated USD 234 billion revenue from the tourism sector. While the global revenue growth was five per cent, it grew by 19.4 per cent in India.”
This revenue was contributed by 87 per cent domestic and 13 per cent foreign tourists, Alphons said.
Around 82 million people are employed in the tourism sector; Alphons said 60-70 per cent of the total domestic tourists fall under spiritual tourism.
“The Indian philosophy is yoga. We see all as one. Yoga is the way of life and it says the entire universe is part of me. If I want to be happy, others have to be happy” the minister said.
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Stressing on the spiritual connectivity between ASEAN nations, the minister also advocated for a peaceful and sustainable world, free of pollution and damage to the environment.
Addressing the audience, Assam Chief Minister Sarbananda Sonowal said more collaboration on various fields between ASEAN countries are needed to strengthen the relationship. He said “We have requested the MEA to negotiate with the ASEAN countries to have their consulates in Guwahati, which will soon become the gateway of India in the northeast”.