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Sri Lanka hosts second meeting of SAARC working group on tourism

COLOMBO: The second working group on tourism of SAARC countries will be held on July 3 and 4 in Colombo.

According to Additional Secretary of the Ministry of Tourism, George Michael, this working group is the mechanism that initiates various projects and programms to promote intra and inter-regional tourism in the South Asian region.

"The meeting and the inaugural ceremony will take place at Taj Samudra Hotel starting at 9 a.m. on July 3. There will be delegates attending from all the SAARC member countries for this meeting headed by senior officials of the Ministries of Tourism and Tourism Authorities.

SAARC Secretary General of Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Pradip Madhavji has already confirmed his participation along with the other member countries of Bhutan, Bangladesh and Pakistan", he said.

The Ministry of Tourism together with the Sri Lanka Tourist Board (SLTB), Sri Lanka Convention Bureau and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs will host this year's meeting in Colombo.

Meanwhile the meeting will also assume special significance this year since 2006 has been declared the "South Asia Tourism Year".

The inauguration of the meeting will be held under the patronage of the Minister of Tourism Anura Bandaranaike and Secretary to the Ministry of Tourism, Dr. P. Ramanujam, Secretary to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, H.M.G.S. Palihakkara and other senior officials and industry leaders attached to the tourism sector will also be present.

Sri Lanka hosted the first meeting of the SAARC Working Group on Tourism in August, 2004 in Colombo.

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