Sri Lanka Is Increasingly Attractive To French Tourists
Embassy of Sri Lanka Paris
Published: 26 Sep 2013
Media Briefing at the Sri Lankan Embassy in France.
An interactive media briefing to promote tourism, Sri Lankan Airlines and to increase awareness of the development programme and economic achievements of Sri Lanka was held at the Embassy of Sri Lanka in Paris on 17th September 2013 with the participation of 29 journalists representing tourism related French media organisations.
Held under the auspices of the Embassy of Sri Lanka in France and the Sri Lankan Airlines Office in Paris, the session included elaborate and vivid presentations on the progress made in the development environment, with special emphasis on the economy, tourism, ports, airports, highways and other infrastructure expansions taking place around the island.
Ambassador of Sri Lanka in France, Professor Karunaratne Hangawatte articulated the catalytic nature of the development activities in the last four years and the effect this has brought to bear on the economic growth of Sri Lanka while also providing the necessary foundation for further expansion. He also highlighted the investment incentives, trading environment and user friendly policies in place in Sri Lanka, which were conducive to prospective investors and global partners. Speaking about the tourism sector, Ambassador Hangawatte said that with the passing of the threshold of one million tourists in 2012, the country intended attracting 2.5 million tourists by 2016. He added that Sri Lanka was blessed with golden beaches and blue ocean waters that encircled the island plus beautiful landscapes, tea-capped hills, breathtaking views, distinguished World Heritage Sites, exotic wildlife and world famous hospitality.
Referring to SriLankan Airlines and the scope of the national carrier, the Director General of Sri Lankan Airlines in France, Mr Danny Schepers emphasised the growth of the airline which had recently acquired more planes included more destinations while also increasing and improving onboard and online facilities as well as upgrading business class seats that offered modern comfort. He noted that the growth in passenger traffic by 9%, increase in income generated and enhanced occupancy rates as well as the measures being adopted to join OneWorld by 2014 were all indicative of the growth and potential of SriLankan Airlines.
The media representatives from a diverse array of media organisations, tour operators and travel planners remarked that Sri Lanka is a valued destination in the French market and the example of the country in ensuring an accelerated growth of tourists from France to····· Sri Lanka as well as the new and improved facilities demonstrated the potential of Sri Lanka, as both a tourism destination and as an investment hub.
The interactive session was followed by a reception at which several varieties of Sri Lankan tea from the different regions were served with mouth-watering Sri Lankan delicacies.
Embassy of Sri Lanka Paris
25th September 2013