//Kerala tourism set to grow by 20 per cent: CII

Kerala tourism set to grow by 20 per cent: CII

Kochi, UNI:

According to a CII survey, the foreign exchange earned by Keralas tourism industry increased by 20 per cent with the inflow of tourists going up by 15 to 20 per cent in October 2005-March 2006.
 
The inflow of tourists to Kerala is expected to grow by nearly 25 per cent while the industry revenue is set to increase by 15 to 20 per cent during April-September this year, thanks to a growing corporate demand and growth of Ayurvedic tourism, says the CII.

According to a CII survey, the foreign exchange earned by Keralas tourism industry increased by 20 per cent with the inflow of tourists going up by 15 to 20 per cent in October 2005-March 2006. The occupancy rate in hotels and resorts had shown a moderate increase and the profit margins increased substantially by raising the tariffs in hotels and resorts.

However, the CII cautioned that Kerala's tourism industry was facing a very stiff competition from Kashmir and some other foreign destinations, to which the Indian tourists were getting attracted due to reduced prices of air tickets.

Lack of direct flights to Kerala reduced the inflow of foreign tourists, it added.

The CII survey covered the performance of the top five sectors of the Southern Region states during October 2005 to March 2006 and provided an outlook for the first six months of the fiscal year 2006-07 and identified their issues and concerns.

Besides tourism, the other sectors covered in Kerala included chemicals and fertilisers, coir, rubber and food processing. All these sectors also had registered significant growth during the last half of the previous fiscal, as per the 'Business Outlook Survey' conducted by the Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) – Southern Region.

The CII said that Keralahs chemical industry staged an ''impressive performance'' during October 2005 and March 2006, by increasing its production and sales by 20 to 25 per cent and 15 to 20 per cent respectively.

It said that owing to good monsoon and demand, the chemical and fertiliser industry had increased its production by 25 per cent and the sales by 15 to 20 per cent. The exports too had increased by five to ten per cent.

The industry was expecting a high rate of growth in production again in the first six months of the fiscal year 2006-07 and a moderate rate of increase in sales, exports and demand, it added.

The coir production and sales in Kerala, which is the largest producer of coconut, contributing as much as 45 per cent of the country's total production, experienced a growth in production of 10 per cent and that of sales by five per cent.

The export too increased by 10 per cent portraying the impressive global demand for coir products. The industry is expected to perform well in the first half of the current fiscal year with the projected growth of production and sales of 5 to ten per cent.