Himachal creating ADB-funded infrastructure for tourists: Minister

Shimla, May 16 (IANS) The Himachal Pradesh government is spending Rs.567 crore in Asian Development Bank-funded projects to create infrastructure at various tourist destinations in the hill state for the benefit of visitors, a state minister said on Monday.

Besides, 28 places have been identified where wayside amenities would be put in place, Irrigation and Public Health Minister Vidya Stokes said. The state had recorded 7-8 percent annual increase in tourist influx.

Steps were also underway to promote sustainable tourism in the state, she said while presiding over a meeting of officials from different departments here.

The state has so far trained 1,000 youth to work as tourist guides.

Stokes said luxury tax exemption under the homestay scheme had been extended till July 2018. New hotels in rural, backward and tribal areas have also been exempted from luxury tax for 10 years, she said.

Three state-of the-art industrial areas are being developed in the hill state, besides promotion of the food processing industries.



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