Jan 09, Colombo: Sri Lanka targeting 4 million tourist arrivals by 2020 will spend more money in upgrading tourist sites to ensure better facilities and access for visitors this year, according to a report in Xinhua.
Janaka Sugathadasa, Secretary of the Ministry of Tourism Development, said the Treasury had allocated 680 million rupees to develop tourist-related infrastructure.
"We need to provide more facilities, better access to facilities and new and alternative facilities for tourists," Sugathadasa said.
Tourism authorities will also work closely with the provincial councils as tourism is a shared subject between the central and provincial governments, he said.
Financial allocations have also been made to promote tourist destinations like Trincomalee and Batticaloa in the east and Nuwara Eliya in the central hills, Sugathadasa said.
A further 100 million rupees will be invested in jetties for transport on the island's waterways and another 25 million rupees has been allocated to upgrade facilities at religious sites.
Tourism has become one of the leading foreign exchange earners in Sri Lanka since the end of the island's 30-year civil conflict that ended in May 2009.
Tourism Minister John Amaratunga said last week that tourism officials were expecting 2.5 million tourists by the end of 2017 and would carry out mega advertising campaigns across the world.
India and China remain the leading markets, generating the highest number of tourist arrivals to Sri Lanka.