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India is counting on the G20 Summit, which will be held on 9-10 September in the capital, New Delhi, to showcase its tourism potential and cultural history. The summit will be attended by leaders from the world's 20 largest economies, representing about 70 percent of the global tourism market.
The tourism sector is an important part of the Indian economy contributing US$143 billion to the GDP in 2023, according to Investindia.gov.in. It also creates jobs for millions of people, with employment from tourism reaching 88 million in 2023.
The government estimates that the sector could contribute US$350 billion to the GDP by 2030. This would create millions of new jobs and boost economic growth.
In the following report, the Emirates News Agency (WAM) highlights the tourism potential and cultural diversity, as well as the initiatives taken by the Indian government to facilitate delegates attending the G20 Summit.
India's largest metro network, the Delhi Metro, has set up special G20 counters at select Metro stations across its network that will issue its “Tourist Smart Cards” from 4th to 13th September, for delegates and tourists visiting the city during the G20 Summit. This will facilitate procedures for incoming delegations and international visitors interested in exploring tourist attractions in the capital. The Delhi Metro is connected to all major tourist destinations.
G20 leaders and delegates will be offered a taste of India’s diverse art and craft–ranging from papier-mâché from Kashmir to Tanjore paintings from Tamil Nadu– with the government organising a “Craft Bazaar” with select items from 30 States and UTs at the summit venue.
Muktesh K Pardeshi, Special Secretary (G20 Operations), G20 Secretariat, Ministry of External Affairs, has reportedly said that more than 30 States and UTs from all over the country are participating to showcase India’s craft heritage to the global media and G20 delegates, who will also have the opportunity to buy these locally sourced products.
Delhi's civic bodies, the New Delhi Municipal Council and the Delhi Municipality, have taken various measures to beautify the city for visitors and tourists. The streets have been decorated with nearly half a million trees, and statues of multiple sizes and shapes have been placed in various parts to display Indian art and culture.
Indian airports have received delegations and participants in the summit, in addition to tourists and visitors, with illuminated sculptures and slogans for the G20 summit. They have also played information clips about the summit and tourist areas that can be visited in the capital, New Delhi.
Delhi International Airport Limited, which operates Indira Gandhi International Airport, has formed a team to monitor arrivals and departures. This is to provide the best experience for summit delegations and visitors who will participate in various events in the city from 9th to 10th September.
India's airports play a major role in attracting tourists and facilitating their arrival to the country. This has prompted the Indian government to plan to spend 980 billion Indian Rupees (US$12 billion) by 2025 to build and modernise airports within the country. Noida International Airport is scheduled to open in 2024 and is preparing to be the largest airport in Asia.
Delhi's Indira Gandhi International Airport (IGI Airport) has entered the club of the world's top 10 busiest airports by passenger traffic, according to Airports Council International (ACI), which is a global trade association of airports.
The IGI Airport ranked ninth in the world in 2022, when it handled almost 59.5 million passengers. This is a significant achievement for the airport, which has been steadily growing in recent years.
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