PESHAWAR, May 19 (APP):Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Chief Minister Mahmood Khan Sunday said the government was taking concrete steps for promotion of tourism sector across the province and keen to facilitate the local and international tourists coming to scenic places.
Talking to a delegation of Gandhara Art and Culture Association in Peshawar on Sunday, he said thirteen new tourist spots had been identified which would be provided state of the art facilities for local and international tourists coming to visit the scenic places across Khyber Pakhtunkhwa.
He said the government had chalked out a comprehensive plan to facilitate the local and foreigner tourists in the province.
A total of 20 tourist spots had been identified in the province so far, which would be converted into tourist zones, the chief minister said, adding, these zones would be extended to the newly merged tribal districts for establishment of healthy atmosphere after decades of insurgency there.
Chief Minister Mahmood Khan said tourism would be promoted as an industry in the province.
“We are working to make tourism sites accessible to local and foreigner tourists,” he said.
He further said the new sites of tourism were located in Chitral, Malakand and Hazara and reconstruction and rehabilitation of access roads to the sites were in progress.
He said his government was working to ensure easy access for local and foreigner tourists to the attractive and beautiful tourism sites.
The chief minister said the establishment of ski resorts at different tourism spots had already been discussed with the Pakistan Air Force. A comprehensive policy was also formulated for the speedy promotion of tourism in the province while a regulatory framework was completed, he added.
He made it clear that his government was fully focusing on the development of infrastructure, access roads and other facilities in the new and existing tourism sites.
The CM underlined the need for visible progress in order to achieve the targets, and said accelerated development of tourism spots on industrial lines should be the first and final goal of the departments concerned.
The Govt, he said, would promote tourism in Kumrat Valley and the local community would be taken on board in this regard. The money earned from tourism at Kumrat would be reutilized in the valley on commercial lines, he added.
The demands and wishes of the local people would be fulfilled on priority basis, he said, adding construction of roads and other developmental projects would be carried out at Kumrat Valley on priority basis.
The protection of forests at Kumrat Valley would be made possible at any cost, the chief minister said, assuring the delegation that the protection of propriety rights of the local community would be made possible.
The CM said tourism-related activities would not only help in revenue generation for the country but would also further the peaceful narrative of Pakistan internationally.
Meanwhile, presiding over a meeting, the chief minister directed the authorities concerned to prepare a model for “Sasta Ghar Program” in Peshawar and Hangu districts.
He also directed the housing department to prepare a report in this regard.