Tourism has been competitively and rapidly developing in the world, and due to specific natural and cultural heritages there is a great possibility of tourism industry in Nepal. Hence, in order to increase national production and income, to expand the earning of foreign currencies to create opportunities for employment, to improve regional imbalance and to develop the image of Nepal in international community having developed and expanded tourism industry, this TOURISM POLICY has been hereby framed.
1. Objectives :
1.1 To develop the tourism industry as a main economic sector of the nation by establishing its inter relation with other sectors of the country.
1.2 To increase employment, foreign currency earnings and national income and to improve regional imbalance having expanded the tourism industry up to the rural areas.
1.3 To develop and expand tourism industry by promoting natural, cultural and human environments of the country.
1.4 To maintain high image of the nation in international community by providing standard services and necessary security to the tourists.
1.5 To develop and promote Nepal as an attractive tourist center.
2. Policy :
a. Private sector participation shall be highly encouraged in the development and expansion of the tourist activities and Government's involvement in this field shall mainly be focused to the development of the tourism infrastructures and in addition to that Government shall also play a role of co-coordinator as well as a catalyst.
b. For the sake of sustainable development of the tourism industry, environmental protection programs shall be carried out in an effective and integrated manner.
c. Priority shall be given to new tourist spots particularly rural tourist spots having strengthened existing tourism infrastructures and facilities.
d. Religious tourism shall be developed by promoting and protecting famous religious pilgrimage places.
e. Nepal shall, gradually be developed as an attractive center for adventurous tourism.
f. The services and facilities to be provided by the tourism entrepreneurs to the tourists shall be standardized and special provision shall be made for the security of tourists.
g. While developing tourism sector, high attention shall be paid to improve regional imbalances.
h. Nepal shall be developed as a principal tourism destination spot by promoting completive tourism in the markets where international tourism is originated.
i. Emphasis shall be given for development of agro based and cottage industries also by integrating them with the tourism industry.
j. Indigenous investment shall be encouraged in the service oriented agency business where national investors have already been competent, and attraction of foreign investments or participation shall be made in the tourism industries like hotels, resorts where foreign skill and technology is transferable and where large scale investment is required.
k. National Civil Aviation Policy shall be executed as an integral part of the Tourism Policy by coordinating them.
3. Working Policy
a. Expansion of investment in the tourism sector shall, gradually be made and mobilization of investments shall be made in construction and development of infrastructures of new tourism spots.
b. Private sector shall be encouraged to provide sightseeing of the places of the religious and cultural importance of the country, high Himalayan peaks and enchanting natural beauties to the tourists having utilized existing physical infrastructures in a systematic and effective manner.
c. Private Sector shall be encouraged to operate various recreational and adventurous tourism activities based on water, land and air, in the various parts of the Kingdom without prejudice to the original culture and traditions of the country.
d. Facilities and incentives shall be expanded to the trusts, temples, monasteries etc. of religious and cultural importance and to the existing pilgrimages in a way to attract the internal tourists and such places shall also be developed as international spiritual center.
e. Wildlife observation tourism shall be developed and promoted by utilizing existing bio-diversity in the country.
f. In order to expand mountain tourism as a sect oral basis, new trekking routes and new Himalayan peaks for mountaineering shall gradually be opened.
g. Inter-countries tourism activities based on mutual benefits shall be increased by coordinating with neighboring friendly nations.
h. Meeting, conferences, trade fairs, cultural and youth festivals, international sports competitions including other creative and promotional tourism products shall specifically be encouraged.
i. Rural communities shall be encouraged to operate various programs of rural tourism development having specifically encouraged the rural tourism.
j. Program for tourism-public-awareness in various levels shall be framed and executed.
k. In order to prevent adverse effects in environment from tourism, a Tourism Environment Guideline shall be framed in national level and the same shall be introduced .
l. A local code of conduct concerning environment shall be framed in accordance with the prevailing international norms and customs as well as National Guidelines and shall be brought into execution.
m. Land under the ownership of the government seemed appropriate from the tourism development point of view shall be made available to the private tourism entrepreneurs to develop as tourism resorts on long-term lease or joint-venture on the basis of their working efficiency and working plan having made it environmental compatibility.
n. If any private sector desires to provide services to the tourists by expanding any infrastructure services and facilities, permission to that effect shall be given having prescribed certain criteria.
o. Tourism entrepreneurs shall be encouraged to introduce through their professional organizations a code of conduct to increase quality and standard of the tourism service and facilities.
p. Trekking areas shall be classified into three areas namely General, Guided and Restricted trekking areas :
i. General Trekking Areas : Areas where outlines of routes and ways are already clear and where minimum tourism services and facilities are available shall be classified as general trekking areas.
ii. Guided Trekking Areas : Area opened for tourism trekking, but where tourism infrastructures like routes and ways and tourism services like hotels, lodges are not available in a basis level shall be classified as guided trekking areas. Arrangements shall be made to permit for trekking in such areas only to the tourists who travel in-group with a definite number through the Trekking Agencies in a year.
iii. Restricted Trekking Areas : Areas deprived from the effects of modernity, located in the high mountain areas where extremely sensitive natural structure and ancient as well as original culture are found, shall be classified as restricted trekking area. Arrangements shall be made to permit for trekking in such areas only to the tourists who travel in-group through the Trekking Agencies along with a liaison officer as designated on behalf of Government.
q. Certain portion of the income raised from the tourism spots prescribed, as economically backward and remote areas shall be spent for the protection, promotion and development of the same area.
r. Special Programs shall be operated in order to maintain the pride of the Mount Everest, the supreme peak of the world.
s. Special emphasis shall be given to promote tourism industry in the markets of the Asian nations. At the lean season of tourists from overseas countries, attraction shall be given to the tourists of neighboring nations.
t. A Tourism Study and Research Unit within the Ministry of Tourism shall be established in order to direct the trends of the tourism development of the country timely and objectively.
u. Government shall appoint a mission abroad or a national or foreign representative involved or interested in the tourism industry as representative for the sake of tourism promotion in Nepal and mobilize them accordingly.
v. Nepal shall be promoted as a primary destination in the international markets where there is a direct air link and tourism promotion shall be made jointly having included Nepal in other tourists originated markets where there is no direct air link and shall be publicized accordingly.
w. Special attention shall be paid for the security of the tourists coming to Nepal. Particularly, necessary practices shall be started in order to maintain rescue groups for the mountaineering tourism.
x. A separate "Tourism Promotion Fund" shall be established for the promotion of tourism and special program shall be operated for the same.
y. Follow up, evaluation and or review the Tourism Policy shall be carried out regularly.
4. Classification of Tourism Industries :
Classification of tourism industries business shall be as mentioned in Annex-2.
5. Provision of Facilities and Incentives for Tourism Industry and Business :
Facilities and incentives shall be provided to the tourism industries and business by the Industrial Enterprises Act, 1992, the Foreign Investment and Technology Transfer Act, 1992, one window policy and by notification published in the Nepal Gazette by Government as provided in Annex-3.
6. Provision for Tourism Manpower :
a. In order to increase quality and standard in tourism service, tourism manpower training programs to be provided by the hotel management and Tourism Training Center shall be conducted regularly. In addition to that, the private sector shall be encouraged to conduct such programs.
b. Local manpower shall specifically be encouraged to be involved in the tourism industry and business to the extend possible.
7. Institutional Arrangements :
For the development of tourism, tourism agencies shall be arranged as follows :
a. Tourism council :
In order to develop the tourism industry as a backbone of national development and to maintain coordination and cooperation among various agencies related with the tourism industry, a high level "Tourism Council " has already been formed. The council shall perform the functions as to remove difficulties aroused and arising in the tourism sector, to give policy level guidelines to the subordinate executive agencies (Ministry of Tourism and Civil Aviation, Department of Tourism and the Board) and to review related plans.
b. Ministry of Tourism and Civil Aviation :
The Ministry shall, on the basis of the policy and guidelines of Tourism Council, design necessary policy for the development of tourism and to make necessary plans and to implement it through Tourism Development Board and Department of Tourism. A monitoring work related thereto shall also be carried out by the Ministry of Tourism and Civil Aviation. Moreover, the Ministry of Tourism and Civil Aviation shall carry out the functions of coordination and adjustment related with the tourism development and also the secretarial functions of the Council.
c. Department of Tourism :
It shall be the duty of the Department of Tourism to frame, in accordance with the stipulated policy, directions and guidelines given by the Tourism Council and Ministry of Tourism and Civil Aviation, programs concerning tourism development and to implement the same. Once the Tourism Development Board becomes competent to carryout its functions, the Department of Tourism shall be dissolved as to remove duplication of the functions. After transfer of the responsibilities such as design an implementation of the tourism plans, tourism promotion, infrastructure development, tourism service, expansion of facilities, manpower development and preservation of ecology to the Tourism Development Board, functions like registration of tourism industries, regulation and facilities to be provided shall be performed by the Ministry itself.
d. Tourism Development Board :
The Tourism Development Board shall, in accordance with the policy, direction and guidelines of the Tourism Council and the Ministry of Tourism and Civil Aviation, perform the above-mentioned functions. The proposed Board shall be a body of autonomous and flexible nature and it shall operate all activities, which are to be operated by Government itself.
The Board shall have a separate seal and also a fund, where the contribution to be granted by Government and other amounts to be made available form the private sector, international agencies and other sources shall be deposited. The Board shall have full authority to withdraw and spend any amount from the said fund. Scope of works, powers, responsibilities and other detail particulars shall be as prescribed but separate.
a. Composition of the Tourism Council
1. Rt. Hon'ble Prime Minister - Chairman
2. Hon'ble Minister/State Minister for Tourism - Vice-Chairman
3. Hon'ble Minister for Finance - Member
4. Hon'ble Minister for Works and Transport - Member
5. Hon'ble Minister for Industries - Member
6. Hon'ble Minister for Home Affairs - Member
7. Hon'ble Minister for Local Development - Member
8. Hon'ble Minster for Forest and Soil Conservation - Member
9. Hon'ble Vice-Chairman, National Planning Commission - Member
10. Member, National Planning Commission- Member
11. Governor, Nepal Rastra Bank - Member
12. Secretary ,Ministry of Finance - Member
13. Secretary, Ministry of Home Affairs - Member
14. Secretary, Ministry of Defense - Member
15. Secretary, Ministry of Industries - Member
16. Secretary, Ministry of Forests and Soil Conservation - Member
17. Secretary, Ministry of Education and Culture - Member
18. Secretary, Ministry of Local Development - Member
19. Secretary, Ministry of Foreign Affairs - Member
20. Secretary, Ministry of Works and Transport - Member
21. Two person nominated from among the reputed experts in the field of tourism - Member
22. Chairman, Hotel Association of Nepal - Member
23. Chairman, Nepal Association of Travel Agents'- Member
24. Chairman, Rafting Agents' Association of Nepal
25. Chairman, Rafting Agent's Association of Nepal- Member
26. Chairman, Nepal Mountaineering Association - Member
27. Chairman, PATA- Nepal Chapter - Member
28. Chairman , Association of Tourist Trekking Guide - Member
29. Chairman, National Air Service Association - Member
30. Secretary, Ministry of Tourism and Civil Aviation - Member-Secretary
b. Composition of Tourism Development Board:
1. Government shall form a Tourism Development Board under the chairmanship of Hon'ble Minister/State Minister for Tourism consisting 8 to 10 members as nominated by Government from among the concerned agencies and private tourism entrepreneurs,
2. While nominating members of the Board from among the private tourism entrepreneurs, they shall be selected from among the persons who may give contribution to the development of tourism industry.
3. Government may designate a member secretary of the Board, from among the members of the Board.
Classification of Tourism Industries and Business:
- Classified Hotel Industry
- Travel Agencies
- Rafting Agencies
- Classified restaurants and bar
- Adventurous/recreational tourism business (Skating, gliding , cable car-complex, hot air ballooning, gulf course, polo , horse riding)
- Manpower production training centers related with the tourism industry.
Facilities and Incentives to be provided to the Tourism Industry and Business:
(a) Classified hotel and resorts shall be classified into the industries of national priority as provide for in the Industries of National priority as provided for in the Industrial Enterprises Act, 1992 and facilities and incentives shall be provided to them accordingly.
(b) Facilities and incentives as prescribed by Government shall be provided to other tourism industries and businesses, excluding hotels and resorts, on the basis of value add, creation of employment and creativeness.
(c) Other prescribed tourism industries and businesses shall, considering their working capacity and plans, be provided to import the prescribed good at concessional rates .
(d) Tourism industries shall be provided with communication equipments, electricity and water supply on the priority basis.
(e) Hotels, restaurants and resorts opened in the rural areas as prescribed by Government and other tourism businesses shall be provided facilities and incentives as prescribed