Published on : Wednesday, December 27, 2017
Of late, the Institute of Policy Studies or IPS, a sovereign government affiliated think tank suggested for greater attention in terms of research into the growing tourism sector of the country in a way to capitalize on the benefits as well as reduce the negative impacts from tourism. At a recent Twitter chat, Yolanthika Ellepola, IPS Research Assistant on the State of the Economy 2017 explained that “Insufficient and unreliable tourism-related data and an absence of tourism-related research,” were the important issues in the industry.
Lately, the Sri Lanka Tourism Development Authority that is currently entrusted with carrying on research in tourism faced severe criticism for improperly sampling departure surveys, which are utilized to measure the tourism earnings of the country at present.
Around 37 tourism operators, who cover all of the star-class hotels in Sri Lanka and some of the largest travel agencies, stated that they couldn’t rely much on the research conducted by the SLTDA.
Malraj Kiriella, SLTDA Director General offered the justification that the SLTDA weighs its results in accord to the total population figures of the tourists released by the Immigration and Emigration Department. However, the total number of tourism operators who condemned SLTDA are only few.
By the end of 2018, he mentioned that Tourism Satellite Account will be set up and it would help to determine more comprehensive tourism data contributed to the national economy.
Under the Right to Information Act, Kiriella had promised to support the proactive disclosure of information comprising regular publishing of data attained by each state institution has been proved unsuccessful to stick to his pledge of quarterly releasing numerous supply-side data which he stated takes time to collect as well as process.