Posted on October 1st, 2023

Sarath Wijesinghe (President’s Counsel Solicitor in England and Wales, former Ambassador to UAE and Israel and President Ambassador’s Forum.)

Tourism and hospitality are interconnected and interwoven to each other in many ways linking contributing and interacting with and benefiting each other. Tourism is the visits to other countries for various purposes for a short stay they say less that limited to one year and more than one day. Official definition of WTO tourism is travelling to strange places outside the usual environment more than one consecutive year for leisure, business or any other purpose used often. Presently tourists visit other destinations in large number due to the fast developments on the IT transport and communication systems fast and spread world over, and some figures on movement today are as follows. Travelling within the country and overseas are as a part of the life style anywhere in the world including Sri Lanka and tourism from and to Sri Lanka is increasing in a rapid phase . tourist influx as leading tourist destinations are  France 48.1 million, Spain 71.7 million, USA 50.9 million, Turky 50.5 million Italy 49.8, Mexico 38.3, UK 63 million, Germany 28.5, Greece 27.8 receive tourists and it continues as an industry , trade, and mode of pleasure to the citizen to rest and relax after hard work for some time. Tourism and Hospitality are largest industries and trades directly connected to each other which is a fast growing and a largest trades and industries world over. It contributes to the income and GDP in all the countries proportionately as a barometer of the development and the image of respective nations. Some companies in the West give compulsory leave to employees  for holidays as a requirement to get the maximum services from the employees.  Doctors advice the workers to take leave for long live and health of the body short and long term relaxation as a holiday as a prerequisite of longevity. As defined  by the world on tourism, it is a concept and a practice that reaches from generations from biblical times to 1800 also via Europe and Switzerland and many other destinations to  date which has transformed to be a worldwide  novel concept  with the modern developments and the fast way of life in the new generation. It  short term movement of a location for pleasure, education, sightseeing including visiting places of interest and historic or archaeological locations , explore wild life experience different climatic conditions may be some of the many reasons of the short stay of a traveller. Tourism is a necessity and a boom for economy of the countries and the world over, that will be discussing in the proceeding paragraphs in fair detail which is most resilient adoptable with dynamism with the tourism that is industry easy to spread on the planet developed in  underdeveloped or poor destinations equally. It is developed as a part of the economy at large scale which is a maim portion of the GDP which is used in the world economic calculations and interactions of the world business platforms. Tourism and hospitality are an industry/trade   adjustable innovative interchanged and technological spread easily adopted to and environment and circumstances with the touch of the modern technology. Concepts and the tourist industry is ever changing and easily approached developed and easily embraced by any group of the society in the world to benefit themselves and their economies if properly utilized. Friendly, warm, helpful, comfortable and safe environments are factors in Creating more  jobs and avenues  in the hospitality in large numbers as a worldwide largest trades benefiting  job creations that in return will boost the economy that will attract much needed foreign currency for underdeveloped and developing countries  equally in addition of many benefits that will be discussed later preceding paragraphs. These factors and requirements are equally applied to upcoming tourist nations such as Sri Lanka that needs more education , training, and facilities such as schools, training centres, ,modern equipment and more teachers in the trade. There are tourist countries generation tourism income and fame and It is expected and projected to generate 1.3 million jobs from tourism which is  an ambitious aim if no unexpected drawbacks and disasters reach the world such as covid19 that has retarded the growth in all areas for a considerable period. Tourism creates  opportunities and contributing to respective economics immensely with the many more benefits and advantages to the country and the world   economy  world over, with world turnover of the industry has reached 7.6 trillion where every 10th person will  benefit from tourism in some way directly or indirectly. Tourism is a trade easy to commence, train and spread anywhere in the world which is the fastest and most productive trade with common language and technical skills that are similar worldwide via world languages and the technical knowhow which is spread world over. There are schools, training centres, and institutions dedicated to the subject and the concept all over the globe, unfortunately lacking in Sri Lanka and developing and upcoming tourist nations. Good climatic conditions, environment, places of visit, hotels ,transport, proper and train guides and translators, health care systems, proper IT and WIFI facilities all combined are main requirements in a tourist country to attract tourists of quality. All these may not be of use if the people are nor well mannered and friendly and if the country appear to be not safe and clean to the visitor arrived incurring a substantial sum for travelling and hotels in addition to the precious time allocated for the holiday. Tourism and tourist and hotel trade in Sri Lanka is dominated by the private sector and partnership with state and private is essential for innovations, risk sharing and to introduce the modern trends as in competing tourism countries. It is essential for the tourist industry to have closer links with the international cruise , shipping and leading tourism companies for the development with modern shipping and airlines looking to have links with the tourist countries, that will enhance economic activism and image building for publicity for the prospective tourists and it is a justified aims to have a target of 1.3 million jobs in 2031 on jobs related to tourism and hospitality sector by improving the education and training facilities through the tourism machinery with the assistant of the public and private sector, where every 10th world citizen is scheduled to be an employee in the tourism/hospitality trade when the world caters to 7.6 trillion from tourism In addition to the indirect benefits to the world. German fetched 41 million dollars in2019 on tourism which is a recorded sum which is almost same in EU and west when the peaceful situation continues with so many additional benefits and advantages such as business development of all sectors due to travel and hospitality trade are directly unseen yet effective benefits to any country benefiting from tourism and hospitality trade in which 70% are females. Peace is a basic requirement in a good atmosphere for tourist and tourism with the motto on tolerance  patience and love towards the visitor expecting to be recognized and treated, benefiting the local community, creating job, opportunities, as by-products of tourism hospitality  in addition to the direct benefits on economy and the reputation and image building that are needed to the host country, requiring to safeguard the wild life and the places of worship and religious and historical significance. These are job oriented industries creating millions of jobs with skilled labour encouraging food chains, beverages, travel, communication, and all kinds of by products with the developments and enhance of the economy and the GDPof the host nation.

Bonded with Hospitality

Tourism is bonded with the hospitality trade as a trade of treating visitors with skills generated from the training of skills, customer service talent, flexibility and adaptability to any tourist the trade gives priority as a consumer and the main subject in the trade to be looked after as the person bringing funds reputation and the livelihood to many in the host country. Flexibility, the cultural awareness, team work technical skills are main ingredients to be a successful tourism regime that offers standard hospitality package to the tourists to their satisfaction. Hospitality is tourism as and tourist is attracted to a destination due to the hospital of the host  country inherently and voluntarily or for trade and business. They say Sri Lankans are inherently hospitable which is gradually fading aways due to the economic hardships and busy life due economic hardships. But any tourist in the receiving country is bound to be treated in a friendly way in addition to providing him with the necessary requirements and facilities.

World went through a different period due to Covid 19 economic hardships and political uncertainty linked to economy in the members of the world family. Today tourism is picking worldwide and look forward for 2024 expecting a leapfrog developments to surpass the difficulties undergone during Covid and economic downturns. Covid recovery is in the process and the forecast for the year 2023 is 9.5 trillion income and even WTO expects and predicts smooth run on the tourism and steady growth expecting more 41% tourist movements world over. The world tread is bound to spread worldwide if no unfortunate natural or manmade disasters strike the world as Covid19 where the recovery has been slow. Wishing and expecting the present and present trend to continue when the tourism hotspots are planning for a successful new year with the expected tourism boom. Now that the tourism is in an upward trend in world and Sri Lanka it is the duty of the governance, the Embassies and Sri Lankans to receive the message and the goodwill of the world inactivation the tourist industry which is connected to hospitality easy to create, adopt and practice that will bring a better lie and a future of every citizen if work together as a group having received the message of goodwill and the

Economic boom using tourism and hospitality as a vehicle towards  prosperity.

Tourism flourishes in countries with requirements or reasons for the visitors to visit the host country for the purposed of travel on various factor and interests, and countries consist of such factors will begiven preference by the visitors. Sri Lanka is famous and known for the beauty, climatic conditions, and places of interest and importance in abundance. Sigiriya is famous as a historic, beautiful, religious, significance world famous in the map of tourism a safe and beautiful rock city with an interesting and historical legend, of the dispute among the father, brothers and the people fought for the kingship, where any average visitor is bound to visit the rock city full of legendary and historical stories. Israel, India and few tourist countries are known on this area tourists visit in search of religious sites and Israel is attracted by Christians  Muslims and those interested in agriculture and innovations as a leader of agriculture, innovations and a country with most visited cities and religious monuments such as the Great Wall, Tel Aviv, Jerusalem and many more. Temple of tooth and the oldest known tree attached to the ‘’Kandy Prehara’’ are world famous and a place of worship of Buddhists world over. ‘’Pollannuruwa’’ is a historic city close to’’Minneriya’’ to watch hundreds of elephants at one sight are rare in any standard a visitor can view with least effort and expenditure. Botanical Garden in Sri Lanka is full of rare species and the Zoological Gardens are full of rare collection of  animals that can be viewed in one place.

  HOSPSTIALIATY INDUSTRY – Two sides of the same Coin of tourism

Tourism and hospitality are two sides of the same coin  interconnected and interwoven as a part and parcel of each other. It is a trade providing positive experiences to the explorers that has a broader range of services of varied kinds giving positive entertainment to the guest. It is the relationship of  host  towards the explorer seeking a novel experience, which is the relationship of a host towards a guest and reception and entertainment towards the visitor, opening the door to be the biggest employer in the world, of a business providing food and other wide range of amenities  facilities and treatments of various kinds.  In the circumstances the tourism could be popularized with the Sri Lankan traditional food in different tasks and the fruits and vegetables to the world via the tourists promoting tourism and the hospitality trade. The opportunities on the hospitality trade are unlimited varies that could be expended with no borders. Hospitality is a necessary ingredient and a source of income and many other advantages to the host country where the visitor expects a hospitable people in a hospitable environment fulfilling their needs and requirements up to the expectations as planned at the journey plan on information collected. Tourism in Sri Lanka fluctuates from time to time depending the country situation on security and economic conditions. War that prolonged for 29 years retarded the improvements on tourism based on many factors in favour of Sri Lanka to be a best destination with the advantages on natural historical and geographical factors. Then came the Covid19 the world too suffered followed by the economic downtown and the crisis now  in the verge of recovery. PPP is a necessity in the development of any industry in the current economic conditions which varies from country to country with Sri Lanka not an exception, where tourism and hospitality is managed and controlled by the private sector and the governance as a regulator with powers to regulate and frame rules and regulations to the industry and the network of tourism outlets completely owned and manned by the private sector and public private partnership is the proven example world over in successful tourist nations which are successful competitors of Sri Lanka. Hospitality is a multibillion dollar industry that is so broad and easy to commence and manage anywhere in the world in any part of a country if properly studied managed and practices in a scientific way on any area of hospitality. The basis of the hospitality is providing a positive experience to the prospective guest who has come to you for various reasons of your environment. It is a lucrative industry easy to learn, initiate, manage if learnt well with commitment wherever you are. UK has computed that they have 207,000 eating houses in UK alone and in the world the eating houses may be in billions in various grades. It is an industry based on the relationship of the host towards the guest. Guest travels to he host or the host can provide the service where the guest is  depending on the circumstance showing how easy it is to operate the industry wherever you are. Sri Lanka fits into this category as a compact island  ideally suited for the travellers visitors and tourists as mentioned by Marco Polo in 13th century who said ( Ceylon then) as a compact island with all requirements for a traveller/tourist that applies to date that has not been properly and fully made use of by Sri Lanka despite the beauty, climate, natural resources, places to visit and access to the entire country so easily only lacking the need, knowledge, commitment with imagination and innovations as in other tourist nations, with an example of Maldives which is destined to go under water in 100 year that has been transformed to an expensive tourist hot spot exploiting the geographical position though vulnerable to be an industry attracting high end tourists is only an example of many beautiful women on the beach, out of whom Sri Lanka too is leading in the competition of tourism and hospitality trade which is booming and expanding daily.

Modern trends

It appears that tourism and hospitality are  the modern trends  for the exposure of the small tourist nations and bond with the leading tourist giants with interactions and working together on exchange of knowledge and the man power which is the most important necessity which is provided by the developing nations and the small tourist nations for the world to maintain the equilibrium with exchange of knowhow knowledge  resources and the man power. The top tourist countries need the assistance of the small tourist and the developing nations for their survival, man power and some row materials which are in short supply and goodwill and also business that derives with the interactions and good will of the world community. Therefore it is time for the trade to plan out a joint programmes for the development of the trade and industry locally as well as globally. (

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