New Delhi, Nov 6 : Australian Minister for Resources and Tourism Martin Ferguson today called on Minister of Tourism and CultureAmbika Soni.
During an hour long meeting here both the leaders discussed matters relating to bilateral cooperation in tourism sector. Both sides stressed on the importance of interaction within the tourism stakeholders in the two countries for better understanding of the tourism products in each other's country.
Referring to the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) signed between the two countries both the leaders felt that India and Australia are important tourism markets for each other.
Soni informed her Australian counterpart about the steps her Ministry is taking to promote eco tourism, rural tourism, Budget accommodation and requirement of more than two lakh trained manpower in the tourism sector in India for 2010 Commonwealth Games.
She said both the countries can work together in the area of providing training to stakeholders in the tourism sector. Soni raised the issue of travel advisories being issued by different countries from time to time. She said such advisories are not conducive for the growth of the tourism sector. She also conveyed the feelings of Indian film industry for incentives by Australian Government in case Bollywood producers want to shoot their films in Australia. Both the leaders also agreed that clean technology must be made available to the developing countries for a better response to climate change.
Ferguson stressing the need for closer contact between the two countries in the tourism sector said both the countries can increase connectivity by having more direct flights between India and Australia.
However, both the leaders felt that direct connectivity can be increased once the present situation of global meltdown improves in future. He also said that carbon tax on aviation is not good for tourism. Soni agreed with the view. Ferguson also said that he will convey the sentiments expressed by the India's Tourism Minister about travel advisories to his Government.
In the year 2007 about one lakh thirty six thousand Australians travelled to India. The outbound figures from India to Australia in 2006 were more than eighty three thousand.