A three-day Biman Bangladesh Travel and Tourism Fair, aimed at boosting inflow of both outbound and inbound tourists, kicks off in the city tomorrow (Thursday), said sector insiders on Tuesday.
They, however, said despite some setbacks in the sector, like the Holy Artisan terrorist attack, the country has built an 'exemplary' resilience against militancy, which might help in the coming days to raise the number of foreign tourists.
They were addressing a press briefing at a city hotel, organised by Tour Operators Association of Bangladesh (TOAB), ahead of the international event.
The TOAB has been organising the 7th BTTF 2017 in association with Biman Bangladesh Airlines (BBA).
With the participation of 50 exhibitors from 13 countries, especially from South and South-East Asia, the fair will be held at the Bangabandhu International Conference Centre, said organisers.
Bangladesh Tourism Board chief executive officer Dr Nasir Uddin said 'The Visit Bangladesh Year 2016' had been extended up to 2018.
Replying to a question, he said that militancy is now a global crisis and Bangladesh has developed great resilience against the problem, which is now helping raise the number of overseas tourists.
The government initiatives against militancy helped organise the five-day long 136th Inter-Parliamentary Union (IPU) assembly this month, where a total of 1,348 delegates from 131 countries attended.
He informed that the 29th Joint Meeting of the UNWTO Commission for East Asia and the Pacific and the UNWTO Commission for South Asia (29th CAP-CSA) and UNWTO Regional Forum on Crisis Communication would be held in Bangladesh on May 15-17 next.
He said positive branding was needed to tap the potential of the tourism sector of the country.
Bangladesh Parjatan Corporation chairman Dr Apurup Chwodhury said tourism would be explored in all potential tourist spots in the country.
Biman general manager (public relations) Shakil Meraj said that apart from its regular operation, Biman has introduced a travel wing styled 'Biman Holidays' to provide inclusive services to holidaymakers from 96 countries to boost tourism.
TOAB president Taufiq Uddin Ahmed pointed out that Indian tourists are getting a lesser number of visas from the four offices of Bangladesh High Commission in India amid many complexities related to visa processing.
TOAB Director Taufiq Rahman coordinated while IFIC Bank deputy managing director Shah Md Mainuddin and Master Card vice president Gitanka Devdip Datta, among others, spoke at the press conference.
However, three seminars on the prospects of different types of tourism in Bangladesh will be held in the fair.
Civil Aviation and Tourism Minister Rashed Khan Menon will inaugurate the event, said organisers.
Delegations from Nepal, Thailand and India are also taking part in the event.