Rawalpindi – 7th October:    The present democratic government under the leadership of Prime Minister Muhammad Nawaz Sharif is committed to facilitate tourists as the promotion of tourism industry would not only help to revive the economy but also remove any misperceptions about Pakistan. This was said by Senator Pervaiz Rashid, Federal Minister for Information, Broadcasting & National Heritage while addressing the World Tourism Day 2015 Seminar and Photo Exhibition organized by Pakistan Tourism Development Corporation (PTDC) in collaboration with Carmudi Pakistan here at Rawalpindi today. He added that we working hard to improve infrastructure and facilities which will definitely increase tourist flow to the country.

He said that the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) has enlisted six Pakistani sites as ‘World heritage sites’. Pakistanis are by nature a hospitable and peace loving people where guests are greeted with a smile and considered a blessing, its colourful festivals, green valleys, fertile planes and rich cultural heritage hold great promise for tourists and visitors alike. He added that The improved law and order situation in country has certainly paved the way for positive changes to come, including a healthy influx of international visitors to Pakistan. The Government is also working on reviving PTDC as National Tourism Organization.

Ch. Kabir Ahmad Khan, Managing Director PTDC in his welcome address said that World Tourism Day is Celebrated every year on 27th September under the theme declared by UNWTO. However, due to Eid Holidays, this year we are celebrating it today under the theme “One Billion Tourists – One Billion Opportunities”. Indeed this is the right theme to describe this extra ordinary industry which has served whoever has treated it right. He added that there are no two views on the importance of sustainable development of tourism industry as major source of foreign exchange earner, a tool of job creation and poverty alleviation and above all creating harmony among people from different parts of the country. It ability to sustain even the poorest in the economic ladder have been proven many times.

He told that PTDC is committed to develop and promote tourism industry in the country. With continuous effort of our officers and staff, during the last financial year 2014-15, PTDC’s subsidiaries have increased their revenue and in coming years, we will soon achieve the target of becoming the self-sustained profitable organization. As an initiative to promote tourism industry and engage youth of Pakistan, PTDC in collaboration with University of Management and Technology Lahore has launched “Pakistan Tourism Friends Club”. The members of the club can avail 20% special discount on room rent at all PTDC Motels spread all over Pakistan. He thanked Carmudi Pakistan for their interest in tourism promotion and sponsoring this event. 

Guest Speakers Col (R) Manzoor Hussain, President Alpine Club of Pakistan,  Ms. Jehan Ara Muee, Secretary Adventure Foundation Pakistan, Irfan ullah Baig, President Pakistan Association of Tour Operators, Khadim Rasool from Travel Agents Association of Pakistan and Mr. Agha Iqrar Haroon, Honorary President, The Region Initiative (TRI) made presentations on “Problems and Challenges being faced in promotion and development of tourism in Pakistan and their solutions”.

The Photo Exhibition was inaugurated by Senator Pervaiz Rashid, which was visited by a large number of students of universities, colleges and schools and general public. The exhibition will remain open till 8th October’s evening.