New star class hotels boost tourism
A number of star class hotels have come up to provide better
facilities for the rising number of tourists arriving in Sri Lanka,
giving a further boost to Sri Lanka's rapidly developing tourism
Chairman Jetwing Hotels, Hiran Cooray receving an award from
Minister of Economic Development, Basil Rajapaksa
In 2012 alone nearly one million tourists arrived in the country. Sri
Lanka expects to increase this number to two million by 2016 making the
island one of the most popular tourist destinations since the end of
nearly three decades of anti-terrorist war.
Economic Development Minister Basil Rajapaksa predicted an increase
in the demand for Sri Lanka's tourist hotels by giving them star class
certification to provide both foreign and local tourists with a quality
He said this at a ceremony held in Colombo in connection with the
issuance of the certificates to tourist hotels by the Sri Lanka Tourism
Development Authority. At the event a five star certificate was issued
to the Jetwing Blue Hotel, Negombo, four star certificates to Jaya Wild
Yala, Jaya Trans Hikkaduwa and Jetwing Sea Negombo and a three star
certificate to Sanmira Renaissance, Unawatuna.
There is a great demand worldwide for environment-friendly hotels and
such facilities in Sri Lanka would attract an increasing number of
tourists to this country, according to minister Rajapaksa.
The annual foreign exchange earnings through the five-year tourism
development plan under Minister Rajapaksa's guidance will be nearly
three billion dollars by 2016.
It would create 500,000 job opportunities associated with the
industry, which will result in the construction of 50,000 hotel rooms.
Already a number of tourism-related programmes have been launched
covering the island's beaches, wild life, heritage, ayurveda, sports,
natural beauty, marriage ceremonies and other local traditions and also
eight specially identified areas. Tourism promotion activities expanding
under Minister Rajapaksa's guidance is benefiting all sections of the
society and also raising the income levels of all those associated with
the industry which is witnessing an unprecedented progress.