CM to Open Kerala Travel Mart on May 5; Buyers from 69 Nations

Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan will inaugurate the eleventh edition of Kerala Travel Mart (KTM) on May 5, opening the country’s largest tourism industry congregation at Kochi amid hopes of a revival in post-pandemic travel.

A flurry of business meets on May 6 and 7 will be the highlight of the event being organized by the KTM Society. The conclave is expected to boost Kerala’s revival of the tourism sector by attracting visitors from across the world after two years of slide owing to Covid-19.

Tourism Minister P.A. Mohamed Riyas will chair the inaugural function at Grand Hyatt in Bolgatty of this city. This will be followed by two days of hectic business meets on May 6 and 7 at Sagara and Samudrika convention centres at Willingdon Island. In continued spirit of giving a fillip to local tourism, the public will be given access to the pavilions in these two venues on May 8 from 1 pm for five hours, organizers said today.

Sustaining the spirit of the recent launch of the state government’s ‘Keravan Kerala’, the upcoming edition of KTM will have caravan tourism and adventure tourism among its focal themes. Alongside, the internationally-acclaimed responsible tourism, too, will receive prominent attention, KTM functionaries told a press conference here.

Shortly before the event, Kochi backwaters will host a sample show of the second edition of the IPL-modelled Champions Boat League being organised by Kerala Tourism, KTM Society President Baby Mathew informed.

Organisers have charted a pre-KTM tour for vloggers and media delegates from within the country and abroad to show the beauty and variety of Kerala’s destinations. There will also be a similar post-event tour for select buyers attending the mart, KTM former President Abraham George said. Buyers from 69 countries have registered for KTM, he added.

The upcoming mart, which is to be totally paper-free in a space of 1.5 lakh square feet, will feature exhibitions on key tourism themes, KTM Society Secretary Jose Pradeep said. Already an encouraging number of international and domestic buyers have registered for KTM, which is also set to give prominence to the government’s tourism initiatives in upstate Malabar.

Last year, the KTM had organized a virtual summit in March, facilitating more than 7,000 business meets that enabled the travel industry to take major strides in overcoming the Covid-triggered economic crisis. That online event saw a virtual buyers’ meet with participants from across the world, including India.

The 2000-constituted KTM Society, which is the country’s biggest organization in the travel and tourism segment, has been working towards reviving the industry since the spread of the novel coronavirus in the state two years ago.


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