Tourism board to open provincial offices
KATHMANDU, JANUARY 12
Nepal Tourism Board (NTB) has started preparations to expand its offices at the provincial level. The board is preparing to open offices in the provinces with an aim to decentralise its activities. It has already deployed staffers to the seven provinces to conduct a study on the feasibility of setting up such offices.
As per NTB, staffers from the board have been assigned to the fields and have been directed to submit the report within 10 days. The officials have to submit the report by recommending the necessary preparations that need to be made to set up the offices.
The board has allocated Rs 10 million in its budget of the current fiscal year for the purpose of establishing the provincial offices. However, as tourist arrivals are still uncertain, the revenue is not as high as projected by the board this year. After the government allowed tourists to come to Nepal for travel, trekking, mountaineering and other tourism activities since October last year, NTB has expected the revenue to gradually increase.
However, compared to NTB’s estimation, revenue collection has been very dismal. If the revenue is insufficient then the board is preparing to seek budget from the government to establish provincial offices.
Amid this, even provincial governments are preparing to establish their own tourism boards. Nevertheless, NTB is preparing to expand to the province level. NRB has claimed that it will coordinate with the provincial governments while establishing the board.
The provincial governments had set a target to open their own tourism board through the budget and the policies and programmes of fiscal year 2019-20.
The provinces aim to establish the boards under the public-private-partnership concept. However, the offices being set up by NTB will be solely under its jurisdiction.