Scope for collaboration with Japan in tourism: Minister

New Delhi : Tourism Minister Shripad Naik Wednesday said India wants to learn from the Japanese experience in the field of tourism and there is a huge scope for collaboration in this field.

Naik, who met Japanese Tourism Minister Akihiro Ohta here, said Japan may consider investing in the hotel sector.

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“India would be interested to learn from the Japanese experience in the field of tourism. There is huge potential for collaboration between the two countries in areas of tourism infrastructure and hotel industry, in particular budget hotels,” Naik said.

“Japan may consider investing in the hotel sector, as the same has been opened up for 100 percent Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) on automatic basis,” he said.

An official statement said during the meeting both sides discussed the matters related to tourism sector to further strengthen the bilateral relations between India and Japan.

Naik also said Ohta’s visit has given further impetus to bilateral relations and has strengthened the bonds of friendship between the two countries.

The minister added that Japan is an important source market for Indian tourism.

During 2013 India received 2.20 lakhs tourists from Japan. India also provided visa on arrival facility to Japanese tourists since January 2010.

“Tourism is an area which provides huge potential for cooperation for mutual benefit to both the countries,” Naik added.

The Japanese minister meanwhile said there is a strong interest of Japanese tourists in places connected with Buddhism in India and Japan may consider investment especially in the Buddhist Circuits.

Ohta also called for regular interactions between the tour operators of the two nations.

The visiting Japanese minister also expressed his condolence for the flood victims in Kashmir.