President Pakistan Businessmen and Intellectuals Forum (PBIF), President All Karachi Industrial Alliance (AKIA), Senior Vice Chairman of the Businessmen Panel of FPCCI and former provincial minister, Mian Zahid Hussain on Monday said that Governments new e-visa policy will play a significant part in the growth of the travel and tourism industry and the people associated with this industry. Initially, Tourists from the UK, China, Turkey, Malaysia, and UAE can benefit from the online visa system. Where previously travelers have to wait for 2 weeks lengthy and difficult process in order to get the tourist visa for Pakistan, with this new program they can get Pakistani visa in few hours with ease while sitting back at their homes. For which Pakistan’s Prime Minister Imran Khan should be praised. With the new visa policy for the international tourists it’s a lot easier to travel within Pakistan now, where previously its mandatory to acquire NOC by tourists and travel operators to visit Kashmir, Chitral and Gilgit Baltistan but now with the new visa policy any tourist can visit said places without a NOC hence saving them from the difficult process of acquiring NOC in Pakistan.
The Veteran Business Leader told the business community that American Forbes magazine has declared Pakistan amongst the top 10 tourist destinations for 2019 in the world. Also, Britain’s backpackers’ society ranked Pakistan at the top as the best tourist destination for adventure loving people who like mountaineering in the world. Government of Pakistan should focus on the growth of travel and tourism industry in Pakistan and spend more on the development of infrastructure associated with tourism sites so that Pakistan can attract tourists from all around the world in order to gain in terms of foreign exchange and to generate employment for the people of Pakistan as well.
Allah has blessed Pakistan with infinite natural beauty. Top 8 highest mountain peaks among worlds top 20 are situated in Pakistan. And Pakistan was the cradle of civilization as Pakistan has ancient sites of Harappa and Mohin Jo Darro which are associated with the world’s first civilization “Indus Valley” which are under focused by the historians to research and study. If the Government can excavate and develop these ancient sites and made them easily accessible by the tourists then these sites can attract millions of tourists and anthropologists from all across the world. Himalayan hill stations should be promoted by organizing winter sports events to attract adventurists and mountain climbers from all around the world so not only the travel and tourism industry but the Sports industry in Pakistan can also flourish
Mian Zahid Hussain said that Pakistan is not only blessed with natural beauty but also Pakistan is the historic gateway and meeting point of various civilizations and cultures since antiquity. In the north of Pakistan, there lie ancient Silk Route networks which used to connect Europe to Far East Asia via China. Incredible Hunza and Chitral valleys are also situated in the Northern part of the country. Pakistan’s cultural capital Lahore boosts many astonishing castles, mosques, and tombs which were built on the principles of beautiful Mughal Architect under historic Mughal Empire and these sites only require a little attention and support by the authorities to become another great tourist destination in Pakistan which can attract a large number of international tourists. According to world travel and tourism council, Pakistan’s travel and tourism industry contributed 7% or about 20 billion dollars to the GDP of Pakistan and it is expected to rise by 6% annually. So If the Government of Pakistan should focus more on the development of the travel and tourism industry then it will be contributing about 36 billion dollars to the GDP of Pakistan in the year 2027. There are many sacred ancient sites belonging to Hindus, Sikhs and Buddhists can be found in Pakistan which can be converted to tourism destination and won over millions of pilgrims from across the globe so that Pakistan can become No.1 destination for travel and tourism in the world.