Governor favours 2 airports in Goa to meet increasing demand

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Panaji, Aug 8 (UNI) Brusning aside criticism against the proposed international airport at Mopa in North Goa, governor Dr Shivender Singh Sindhu said Goa requires the second airport to promote world class tourism of its stand-alone brand to fuel its economy.

''Tourism and aviation are two sides of the coin and they complement each other. Goa needs international airport at Mopa as it could promote world class destination of its own brand,'' the governor said in his maiden speech at the one day ''Tourism Meet-2008'' here today.

The proposed new international airport could serve as an air cargo complex for the entire west coast besides promoting general aviation for the corporates, while complementing the existing one at Dabolim to develop which as much as Rs 400 crores to 500 crores had been pumped in, Mr Sindhu stated.

The express highway on the national highway 17A(Goa-Bombay) proposed for expansion, would also go a long way in promoting fast traffic, linking the north and south Goa. Upgradation and modernisation of infrastructure capacity would maximise benefits of tourism, he said.

The meet was organised by the Goa Chamber of Commerce and Industry in collaboration with the Travel and Tourism Association of Goa, Tourism Department of Goa and other stake holders, to discuss strategies for promoting sustainable tourism in the state.

The governor called for determining measures to diversity from unidimentional beach-oriented tourism to other equally attractive and economically vibrant areas to ensure inclusive growth involving all the stake holders including the community around.

At the sametime, he warned against damaging ecology and environment with strict observance of ''code of tourism ethics'' while drafting the tourism activities.

He also urged the hoteliers and related industries to come out with attractive competitive packages to withstand global competition while ensuring inclusive growth to promote its own brand of tourism in Goa like the north eastern state and Kerala.

''Goa has all the potential to become a destination par excellence for global tourists, provided its projected its stand-alone brand of tourism is diversified into hitherto untapped areas such as watersports, yatching, scuba diving, eco, hinterland and adventure tourism besides heritage and cultural tourism,'' the governor added.

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