As an extension to the First Year of the U.S – India Travel and Tourism Partnership Year 2017, Indo-American Chamber of Commerce in support with U.S. Consulate General hosted a day long convention on “Indo-U.S. Promotion of Travel and Tourism” .
The convention was attended by Chief Guest Shri Ashok Chandra Panda, Minister of Tourism, Odisha Special Guest Mr. Keshav R Prasad, Special Secretary & Director cum MD Ministry of Tourism, Bihar; Guests of Honour Mr. Patrick Santillo Minister, Counselor for Commercial Affairs, U.S. Embassy, New Delhi and Shri Jayanta Malla Baruah, Chairman, Assam Tourism Development Corporation (ATDC); along with the members of Indo- American Chamber of Commerce, Mr. N V Srinivasan, National President, Mr. Vasant Subramanyan, National Vice President, Mr. B.K Nahata, Regional President-EIC and Mr Anil Punjabi, Chairman-Eastern Region, The Travel Agents Federation of India (TAFI).
The convention explored opportunities for outbound Tourism; U.S. Visa application procedure; Investment opportunities in Travel, Tourism & Hospitality sectors; Enhancing Tourism-Airlines & Hotel Chains along with showcasing of the states of Eastern India.
The programme offered a large and meaningful platform to showcase the vast potential in tourism by conducting four Technical Sessions. First Technical Session started with presentations by Brand USA, Destination USA (Florida, New York), Visit USA &Mice followed by a panel discussion on Promotion of Tourism to the U.S.- Initiatives and removal of Impediments and a brief demonstration on ‘U.S. Visa Application Procedure’ by Ms Shelly Dittmar.
Second session included a panel Discussion on ‘Potential for investment in Travel, Tourism & Hospitality Sector’ and also showcased case studies on “Using U.S. management for development of hospitality sector – Vision for Eastern India’ by the spokespersons of JW Marriot and Starwood respectively.
Third Session included a discussion on ‘Enhancing Tourism – Airlines and Hotel chains and technology as a force and a Multiplier for Regional Tourism Development’ by the leading Airlines (Air India, Qatar Airways, Indigo, Jet Airways, and Spice Jet) and hospitality chains (The Oberoi Grand & JW Marriot) along with a presentation on Technology Advancement by IIM and Uber.
The fourth session concluded with the showcasing of the Eastern states’ potential and positives as tourism destinations, followed by a discussion on ‘Positioning East – experiential Eastern India in the US market ‘along with a demonstration by Digital Branz on promoting guidance for tourism via website.
In 2016, the United States and India announced that the two nations would participate in a year of travel and tourism partnership in 2017. The U.S – India Travel and Tourism Partnership Year marks the first year of bilateral engagement between the two countries on trade in travel and tourism services under the U.S. – India Strategic and Commercial Dialogue. This collaboration generated a vast platform which allowed both the governments and private sectors to increase travel and tourism between the two countries. India is a key market for USA, according to a survey in 2015; the United States welcomed 1.1 million Indian visitors, making India the eleventh largest inbound visitation market and the seventh largest market for U.S. travel and tourism exports. There is an enormous growth potential in the tourism sector of India.
Mr. Craig L Hall, Consul General, U.S. Consulate General Kolkata send a message, “India and the United States are celebrating the year 2017 as the year of Tourism Cooperation. The Indo American Chamber of Commerce (IACC), being the Apex Bilateral Chamber of Commerce in India committed to Indo-U.S. business and trade development, organised this convention on Indo-U.S. Promotion of Travel and Tourism which offered an important platform to showcase the vast potential in tourism between the two countries. We are extremely happy to be a part of such initiative and to see the participation of Domestic and International policy makers, representatives from the U.S. government and corporate sector, and leaders of the hospitality industry to promote tourist traffic and investment possibilities.”