CHANGES IN TAAN LEADERSHIP FROM DATED ON 28TH AUGUEST 2009
New leadership in TAAN
The 31st annual general meeting followed by an election programme of Trekking Agencies´ Association of Nepal (TAAN) on Friday elected a new executive committee under the leadership of Sitaram Sapkota for two years´ tenure. The 14-member panel led by Sapkota defeated the panel led by DB Koirala to lead the umbrella organization of over 650 trekking agencies in the country. Bachchu Narayan Shrestha, Mahendra Singh Thapa, Rajendra Bajgain, Nima Dorjee Sherpa and Khum Bahadur Subedi have been elected as 1st vice president, 2nd vice president, general secretary, secretary and treasurer respectively. Likewise, Nima Sherpa, Manila Sherpa, Nima Dendi Sherpa, Suman Dahal, Kul Bahadur Gurung, Bhimraj Poudel, Ramesh Dhamala and Rashmi Tamot were elected as members. Sapkota has already served as the general secretary of TAAN, while Bachchu Narayan Shrestha and Khum Bahadur Subedi were in the outgoing committee as 2nd vice president and member respectively. According to TAAN statute, the elected executive committee will nominate three members in the 19-member executive committee. Immediate past president Jyoti Adhikari and president of TAAN Pokhara chapter Basanta Duwadi are the ex-officio members in the panel.
Tourism secy promises friendly policies
Secretary at the Ministry of Tourism and Civil Aviation Nagendra Prasad Koirala has promised to formulate favorable policies for the tourism sector. Inaugurating the 31st annual general assembly of Trekking Agencies’ Association of Nepal (TAAN) on 28 August, Ghimire said the government was committed to making the Nepal Tourism Year 2011 campaign a grand success. He also said the amendment to the Travel and Trekking Regulations would help address genuine demands of trekking agencies. Earlier, TAAN president Jyoti Adhikari demanded the government to make the trekking sector more managed by implementing the Trekking Information Management System (TIMS) under the one-door system through TAAN. Ram Kaji Koney, president of Nepal Association of Tour and Travel Agents (NATTA), extended best wishes for the success of the TAAN’s annual conclave. In the closed session, the annual general meeting approved annual progress report prepared by general secretary Navaraj Dahal and financial report presented by treasurer Ishwori Poudel.
Tourist arrival up by 5% in August
Tourist arrival to Nepal in the month of August has increased by five percent as compared to the arrival figure of same period last year. According to statistics collected by Immigration Office, Tribhuvan International Airport, and disseminated by Nepal Tourism Board (NTB), a total of 27,676 came to Nepal via air in the month of August. The growth in tourist arrival in August was contributed by a robust growth of 87 % from China. Similarly, the arrivals from Japan, Singapore, South Korea and Thailand have also increased by 27%, 44%, 21% and 9% respectively. The Asian markets to decline in this month were Malaysia (-13%) and Chinese Taipei (-21%). In the SAARC region, arrivals from Bangladesh and Pakistan registered growth of 23% and 22% respectively. However the arrivals from India decreased by 10% compared to the same month last year. Sri Lanka also witnessed a negative growth of 1%. European countries also recorded impressive growths in August. Arrivals from France (9%), Germany (34%), The Netherlands (20%), Spain (9%) and Denmark (50%) all increased during the period. The only market to decline in this month was the UK by 24%. Tourist arrivals from New Zealand and Canada also registered significant growth of 22% and 88% respectively. The arrivals from the US remained stable whereas the Australian market declined by 4 %. This is the third consecutive month Nepal has witnessed positive growth in the international tourist arrivals. Recovery in the arrivals to Nepal in the beginning of second half of 2009 is in line with the marginal improvement observed in some of the economies.
Qatar Airways to increase Nepal flights
Qatar Airways has announced to increase its flights to Nepal from 11 to 28, including seven cargo flights, according to Doha-based The Peninsula daily. The expansion of flights became possible after aviation authorities of Nepal and Qatar inked an agreement to this effect on 31 August. The two sides have also agreed to update provisions of the air transport agreement, especially the ones related to air safety, the daily reported. Qatar Airways link Kathmandu to Doha, one of the major hub in the Middle East, bringing in Nepali workers from the Middle East and visitors from European countries, a niche market for Nepal’s tourism industry.
South Asia Climate Change Conference kicks off
Prime Minister Madhav Kumar Nepal inaugurated ‘Kathmandu to Copenhagen: South Asia Climate Change Conference’ in Kathmandu on August 31. All SAARC nations along with China and some other mountainous countries are taking part in the event. Ministers from Nepal, Maldives, Sri Lanka and Bangladesh are attending the regional meet on climate change. Bhutan is, however, not participating in the conference. Speaking on the occasion, Mohan Munasinghe, vice-chairperson, Inter-governmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), said that sustainable development approach could only help reduce the impact of climate change on the Himalayas. Andreas Schield, director general, Integrated Centre for Mountain Development (ICIMOD) urged the government to declare the Himalayan region as the hotspot for climate change. He appealed for more focus to mitigate the risks of the global problem. The conference is slated to reach a consensus on the agenda for the Copenhagen Conference. The SAARC Environment Ministerial meeting, held in Dhaka last year, adopted the SAARC Action Plan and Declaration on Climate Change and the SAARC summit, held in Colombo in August 2008, reiterated the need for strengthening the cooperation in the region to tackle the problem.
Sources: TAAN E-News letter
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SPECIAL CHANGES IN NEPAL IN POLITICAL, SOCIAL & ECONOMY SECTORS