The Next Big Hospitality Hotspot Reviewed by Momizat on . World Bank has conferred the moniker ‘the leader’ on the state for its fast-paced reforms. Vishal K. Dev writes on Odisha’s efforts to develop its economy beyon World Bank has conferred the moniker ‘the leader’ on the state for its fast-paced reforms. Vishal K. Dev writes on Odisha’s efforts to develop its economy beyon Rating: 0
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The Next Big Hospitality Hotspot

World Bank has conferred the moniker ‘the leader’ on the state for its fast-paced reforms. Vishal K. Dev writes on Odisha’s efforts to develop its economy beyond mineral-based industries, and how single-window clearances for hospitality projects will transform the state into a tourism haven.

Odisha has remained one of the top investment destinations in the country over the last decade and a half. It has been voted first in terms of attracting live manufacturing investments by ASSOCHAM, 2016, and is fast emerging as the manufacturing hub of the East. Odisha was also named as a leader in the ‘Business Reforms Report, 2016’ by the World Bank for creating a conducive environment with fast-paced reforms.
According to Dun & Bradstreet, Odisha achieved 10% higher growth rate compared to India’s growth of 6.5% during 2017-18, and is poised to grow at around 7.14% growth, 12% by year 2020. Odisha is also known as the heartland of mineral industry with mineral production amounting to Rs. 41,621crore or 13.88%, the highest amongst the Indian states in 2017-18. It is also the largest producer of aluminium, steel and stainless steel in the country.
Odisha further wants to diversify its growth by moving into the manufacturing and services sector. Tourism is one of the six focus sectors of the state and to reiterate Hon’ble Chief Minister, Odisha Shri Naveen Patnaik, our aim is to become the investment destination of choice by continuously creating and delivering outstanding opportunities for business growth, fostering all-round socio-economic development for the state and its people.
In order to achieve our goals, we are focused on finding solutions from ground up. For years, we have been marred by infrastructural problems that hindered or rather slowed down the development of tourism in the state.
With a coastline of 480km, Odisha is a state with many strategic ports and waterways that could potentially lead to it becoming a premier maritime state that links South Asia with South-East Asia and East Asia. Paradip Port could make Odisha a spring-board for India’s ‘Act East’ policy and also strengthen maritime links in the Indo-Pacific.
Thirty seven tourism projects involving private sector investment have been approved through single window mechanism by us. Out of these, 12 projects with investment proposal of around Rs. 585crore have been cleared in 2017. The infrastructure in Shamuka project is being laid and shall soon be ready for allocation to private players, which will further boost our tourism potential.
Meanwhile, large hotel brands such as The Taj Hotels, Hyatt, ITC and Crown Plaza have lined up plans for establishing properties in the state. To accommodate increased flow of tourists by 2025, we need to ramp up the hotel room capacity three-fold through public-private participation, and we are focused on achieving that goal.
Last year we received a record footfall of foreign tourists, especially from Southeast Asia thanks to air connectivity to Bhubaneswar from overseas that helped to increase the number of tourists in the state. This number further increased after AirAsia launched direct flight from Bhubaneswar to Kuala Lumpur in 2017, connecting the Southeast Asian countries. With the new airport at Jharsuguda, the only way for us is upwards. We recently organised road shows in Malaysia and Thailand where we enlightened stakeholders about the state’s tourism potential and received an overwhelming response.
Some of the proposed investible tourism projects in Odisha include eco-tourism projects at Tampara and Ganjam, 3-star and above category of hotel and resort projects at Talasari, hotel projects at Talasari-Udaypur beach, and an eco-retreat at Gopalpur on Sea, Shamuka and Konark. Tourism will be further boosted by the state’s focus on smart cities. In 2016, Bhubaneswar has already won the Government of India’s Smart City Challenge against 97 other cities.
The biennale ‘Make in Odisha Conclave, 2018’, which is to be held in Bhubaneswar from November 11-15, is a great opportunity for businessmen and hoteliers from all over the world to witness the potential the state has to offer, and acquaint themselves with our investment-friendly policies and environment. Of the investment intents received, close to 65% of the projects are in various stages of approval and implementation. The new projects taking off are also a reflection of Odisha’s efforts to broad-base industrial development beyond mineral-based industries.


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