Nepal Tourism 2023-2032 Plan– The Nepal government launched a new 10-year plan to revive the country’s tourism sector, which has been hit hard by the COVID-19 pandemic. The plan called the Nepal Tourism Decade 2023-2032, aims to attract 3.5 million tourists to Nepal in the next 10 years, excluding Indian and overland tourists. It also aims to increase tourist spending to $125 per day, create 1 million direct jobs in the tourism sector, and increase the tourism sector’s contribution to national GDP to 10 percent.
What has been accomplished so far?
The Nepal Tourism 2023-2032 Plan is a joint initiative of the Ministry of Culture, Tourism, and Civil Aviation, the Nepal Tourism Board, and the private sector. They developed the plan in consultation with a wide range of stakeholders, including tourism entrepreneurs, experts, and local communities.
Today, the Nepal Tourism Decade 2023-2032 Plan is still in its early stages, but the government has already taken some steps to implement the plan. For example, the government has recently started the operation of two new international airports, Gautam Buddha International Airport in Bhairahawa, Lumbini, and Pokhara Regional International Airport. The authorities expect these airports to improve connectivity to Nepal and make it easier for tourists to visit the country.
How the government plans to go ahead?
The Nepal Tourism Decade 2023-2032 will be implemented in four phases:
|Phase 1 (2023)||Consolidation: This phase will focus on consolidating the gains made during the previous phases, and on ensuring that Nepal remains a competitive tourism destination.|
|Phase 2 (2024-2027)||Preparation: This phase focuses on developing and implementing marketing and promotional campaigns, and on improving infrastructure and services.|
|Phase 3 (2028-2031)||National FocusThis phase will focus on promoting Nepal as a year-round destination, and on attracting more tourists from new markets.|
|Phase 4 (2032)||Consolidation:This phase will focus on consolidating the gains made during the previous phases, and on ensuring that Nepal remains a competitive tourism destination.|
The Nepal Tourism 2023-2032 Plan outlines a yearly focus on various provinces as part of the government’s strategy.
In 2024, Bagmati Province, housing Kathmandu, and iconic destinations like Everest and Pokhara, will be in focus.
2025 will shift our focus to Gandaki Province, covering the Annapurna region and Lumbini, Buddha’s birthplace.
As we progress into the year 2028, Madesh Province will take center stage, and in the subsequent years of 2029, 2030, and 2031, we will direct our focus towards Sudur Paschhim, Province 1, and Karnali Province respectively. The year 2026 and 2032 will be marked by national-level programs.
The Nepal Tourism 2023-2032 Plan represents an ambitious plan, and achieving its targets requires addressing several major challenges. These include:
- Improving connectivity: Nepal needs to improve its air and road connectivity to attract more international tourists.
- Developing tourism infrastructure: Nepal needs to invest in developing tourism infrastructure, such as hotels, resorts, and tourist attractions.
- Promoting Nepal as a year-round destination: While Nepal is renowned for trekking and mountaineering, it boasts a wealth of attractions beyond these activities for tourists.
- The government needs to promote Nepal as a year-round destination, with a variety of activities for tourists of all interests.
In addition to the challenges mentioned above, the government also needs to address the issue of sustainability. Nepal’s delicate ecosystem demands government efforts to ensure tourism development safeguards the environment and local communities.
The government should also focus on promoting responsible tourism. This means encouraging tourists to respect the environment and local culture. It also means supporting local businesses and communities.
It is also important to note that Nepal’s tourism sector is facing increasing competition from other countries in the region. To stay competitive, Nepal must innovate in tourism, offering top-notch experiences to visitors.
Overall, The Nepal Tourism Decade 2023-2032 is an opportunity for Nepal to become a world-class tourism destination. The government and the private sector need to work together to make this vision a reality. It is a positive initiative with the potential to make a significant contribution to Nepal’s economy. However, it is important to address the challenges and opportunities mentioned above to ensure its success.