Weekly Official e-Newsletter of Nepal Tourism Board
January 04, 2013
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New Year 2013 is greeted with Positive News !!!
The total number of tourist arrivals by air in aggregate (Jan-Dec, 2012), compared to same period in 2011, have increased by almost 10% to 598,204. The total tourist arrivals in 2012 were 598,204 that were 53,219 more visitors in same period (Jan-Dec) of 2011. In the context of Nepal, the year 2012 has concluded with positive notes both in terms of total visitor arrivals for the month of December and also for the whole year. The figures released by Immigration Office, Tribhuvan International Airport (TIA) reveal that visitor arrivals in the month of December 2012, compared to the same month last year, have increased by 2.4% to 44,774.
Arrivals from Asia (other than South Asia) segment have registered a positive growth of 15.1% in the year 2012. In December 2012, arrivals from this segment has recorded positive growth of 10.3% in aggregate with Malaysia (141.5%), Japan (11.8%), Singapore (12.1%), and Thailand ( 25.9%). However, China and South Korea have registered negative growth of 3.1% and 1.6%, respectively, compared to the same month last year.
The South Asian segment has also registered a positive growth of 10.4% in the year 2012. The arrivals from Pakistan and Sri Lanka have grown by 4.1% and 20.6% respectively but arrivals from India and Bangladesh have declined by 10.4% and 19.7% respectively in December 2012.
An overall positive growth of 3.5 % has been observed from the European markets in the month of December 2012 and 4.5% in the year 2012. Arrivals from the UK, Austria, France, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands and Poland, are up by 11.9%, 25.6% 14.3%, 23.7%, 10.3%, 14.2% and 114.3% respectively. However, Belgium, Spain and Russia have posted a negative growth of 22.8%, 27.7% and 32.5% respectively .
Arrivals from the Oceania (Australia and New Zealand) and North America (Canada and USA) recorded overall positive growths in the year 2012 by 15.1% and 10.4% respectively. Tourist arrivals from Australia, New Zealand, Canada and USA have registered remarkable growth of 24.4%, 20.3%, 7.5% and 4.9% respectively in December 2012 compared to 2011.
In 2012, total foreign tourist departures, Nepalese arrivals and Nepalese departures are at 688,566; 736,679 and 862,416 respectively. A total of 54,885 foreign tourists departed from TIA in December 2012. The number of Nepalese arrivals stood at 61,823 while 93,133 Nepalese departed from TIA in December 2012.
According to the United Nations World Tourism Organisation (UNWTO) international tourism has witnessed a moderate growth in 2012 with over one billion international tourist arrivals. One billionth mark is a new record for international tourism a sector that accounts for one in every 12 jobs and 30% of the worlds services exports. Further, the UNWTO asserts that the comparative strength of tourism in a period of continued economic uncertainty is confirmed by the positive trend on tourism earnings and expenditures.
Globally, international tourism results have so far not been seriously affected by the economic volatility, with growth continuing above the average of 3.8% a year projected for the decade 2010-2020 according to UNWTOs long-term forecast Tourism Towards 2030. The UNWTO estimates that for 2013 growth is expected to continue but at a more moderate rate in the range of 2% to 4%.
Kathmanhdu- Top Ten Destination in Asia
Tripadvisor.com, an international popular portal for travel has ranked Kathmandu as top ten destination in Asia in 2012 out of 25 listed. Its website says, "Nepal’s capital is surrounded by a valley full of historic sites, ancient temples, shrines, and fascinating villages. Mingle with locals and animals amid Durbar Square’s monuments, or join mountain trekkers in the bustling Thamel District. Explore shops for exquisite work by local artisans—carpets and paper prints are specialties."
In the top destinations are Siem Reap, Cambodia, Beijing, China, Shanghai, China, Chiang Mai, Thailand, Male, Goa, India, Boracay, Philippines, Hong Kong, China and Hanoi, Vietnam. India’s New Delhi and Vanarasi are in 23rd and 24th position respectively.
Chitwan Festival and Central Industrial Trade Fair from Jan 9
Chitwan Festival and Central Industrial Trade Fair 2012 is being organized in Narayanghat of Chitwan from January 9-18 with an objective of promoting local products.
The 10-day event will be held at the exhibition ground on the banks of the Narayani River.
"The festival mainly focuses on social, cultural, educational, health and tourism related promotional activities," said Dr Tilchandra Bhattarai, coordinator of the event.
Speaking at a press meet in the capital, Bhattarai said the festival will have 440 stalls, including 18 international stalls and eight special stalls.
The event will have separate section for automobiles, information technology, art and sculpture, one village one product, poultry, bank and financial institutions, restaurants and children park, among others.
Besides, there will be model houses, demonstrating lifestyle of different ethnic groups of the region and food festival showcasing traditional foods of Chitwan will be organized in Narayanghat Bus Park.
President Dr Ram Baran Yadav is scheduled to inaugurate the event.
During the festival, a three-day seminar on ´Central Nepal: The Land of Opportunities´ (Invest Mid Nepal) will be held to disseminate information about infrastructure development, hydropower, tourism, education, health and agriculture, among others, so that those who are eager to invest in these sectors can know about it.
The ninth edition of Chitwan Festival -- one of the largest business fairs of the country -- is being organized jointly by Chitwan Chamber of Commerce and Industry (CCCI), Chitwan District Development Committee, Bharatpur Municipality, Ratnanagar Municipality and Ratnanagar Chamber of Commerce and Industry.
"The seminar is expected to see participation of experts from China and India, non-resident Nepalis, policy makers and investors," said Bhattarai.
Besides, a daylong seminar will be held on beekeeping and fishery. Various entertainment activities like boat racing, motor boat riding, slow cycle race and regional beach volleyball competition will also be organized during the event.
People visiting the festival can also benefit from free health camp.
In order to make the festival and industrial fair a huge success, 650-member main committee, 34-member steering committee and 44-member advisory committee have been formed.
The organizers have expected the festival to draw 450,000 visitors and record transactions of about Rs 250 million. ( News courtesy: The Republica)
CAAN celebrated its anniversary
The number of international air passengers to and from Nepal increased by 7.59 percent over the first ten months of 2012, recording more than two-fold growth over the global forecast (of air passengers) that International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) had previously made.
ICAO had projected volume of air passengers to grow by just 3.4 percent during the period.
The rise in international air passengers was facilitated by entry of new international airlines and increase in their flight frequency. The aircraft movement from Tribhuvan International Airport (TIA) in the international sector increased by 2.89 percent during the period, compared to a year ago, shows the statistics that Civil Aviation Authority Nepal (CAAN) made public on December 31.
"TIA handled a total of 2.36 million passengers in the international sector," Tri Ratna Mananadhar, director general of CAAN that celebrated its 14th anniversary on Monday, said.
During the period, flights of passenger aircraft to and from TIA increased by 2.89 percent, while air cargo movement increased by 6.11 percent.
However, the growth rate of passengers in the domestic sector was not so remarkable. Statistics shows number of passengers in the domestic sector increased by a meager 1 percent to 1.32 million.
In 2011, air passenger movement in international sector had increased by 17.4 percent whereas air domestic air passenger growth rate had declined by 0.80 percent.
Nepal has signed Air Service Agreement (ASA) with 36 counties which generates more than 5.76 million seats from different airlines annually to and from Nepal.
However, international airlines operating to Nepal are using only 44.7 percent of the total permitted capacity out of which the national flag carrier Nepal Airlines Corporation is enjoying only 6.3 percent of the total permitted seats.
"With the objective to increase capacity of radar coverage, we are installing new radar station in Bhattedanda, Lalitpur," said Manandhar. "Works to install new surveillance data processing system, controller working position and radar training simulator are going on," he added.
On the occasion, CAAN also awarded Qatar Airways and Buddha Air with No. 1 airlines in terms of carrying highest number of passengers in international and domestic sectors, respectively.
Speaking on the occasion Minister of Culture Tourism and Civil Aviation Post Bahadur Bogati said the ministry was holding talks with Investment Board so that works on second international airport (SIA) in Nijgadh can go ahead. "The alternative to TIA is a primary requirement for the development of aviation sector and the government is positive on bringing the second international airport into operation soon," he added.
Currently, 29 airlines from 16 countries are operating in Nepal. These airlines connect Kathmandu with 24 international destinations. Likewise, 16 airlines, including six chopper operators, are serving different domestic destinations. ( News Courtesy: The Republica)
Pokhara street festival ended with fanfare
The 14th Pokhara Street Festival ended on January 1, 2013 under the theme ‘Eat, Dance and Enjoy on the Street’. Chief Secretary Lilamani Poudel inaugurated the five-day festival amid a function.
The Restaurant and Bar Association, Pokhara, organises the event every New Year. Almost all hotels and lodges in the tourist hotspot of Pokhara have been filled with domestic and foreign visitors.
Normally, tourists start returning back to their county from mid-December to celebrate Christmas and New Year in their home country. And, the period is considered off-season for tourism in Nepal. "The street festival aims to increase tourists’ length of stay during this off-season," said Bhimsen Bhujel, coordinator of the event.
For the festival, around three-kilometre road section (Fishtail Gate-Gaurighat-Barahi-Democracy Chowk) had been decorated with lights and a number hotels and restaurants are offering discounts on food and accommodation menu. Special packages had been developed for tourists to encourage them to stay in Pokhara.
The organiser had installed 16 CCTV cameras for security. Around Rs 4.5 million had been spent for the festival.
Normally, fun seekers and partygoers flock the Lake city, but the city has also been attracting social event organisers of late. The Crazy Creation Kathmandu organised a cultural event for a social cause at Hotel Fulbari.
Nikhil Gurung, managing director of the organisation said the event aimed to raise funds to help students of Chepang community in Chitwan. "We have been organising events to provide food and clothes for around 230 Chepang children," he said. "We are beginning a noble initiative from the New Year."
Elephant race concluded
The 9th annual elephant race, which is organised by hoteliers and Nepalese tourist offices, was won by an elephant named Bahadur Gaj.
The race, which took place in Sauraha in the Chitwan region of Nepal, was part of the three day 9th International Elephant Festival which started on December 26 and proved very popular with both locals and tourists.
One unidentified Australian tourist said: "Only in Nepal can you see elephant race. And I think this should be the best race in the world."
Shankar Sainju, the founding president of the organising committee of Elephant festival says their next phase in planning is to start building a fully fledged stadium only for animal sports - with elephants regularly playing games of football. Their plans are to have it completed within the next five years.
Other elephant-themed events during the festival included a soccer match, a beauty contest, a bull cart race, and a horse cart race.
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