PORVORIM: Calling it a ‘Junket’, the Fatorda MLA Vijai Sardesai today demanded a white paper on all road shows done by the Goa Tourism Department.
The MLA also demanded a pre-audit of all the road shows to ascertain whether we are doing such promotional events in countries from where we can really attract tourists.
The opposition grilled the tourism minister over declining tourist footfall despite huge money spent on road shows and promotional events across the world.
Sardesai and Congress MLA Carlos Ferreira said that road shows are just holiday junkets. They pointed out that there is no action plan or data as to how much have we benefited from these road shows all these while.
Minister Rohan Khaunte deferred to agree that there is a decline in tourism. He said that there was a 138 per cent growth in foreign tourist arrival in the state in November 2023 from Nov 2022.
He said that the domestic tourist figure has already crossed the pre-pandemic situation, wherein in 2019 we got 71 lakh tourists.
He said that the UK and Russia are two markers on which Goa was heavily dependent. We were looking for Israel but due to the war that did not kick off and from Uzbekistan only one charter arrived.
“See, road shows are no longer business of junket but it is serious business now,” Khaunte said.