Forty eight main awards and nine merit awards are up for grabs at the second annual 'Travel and Tourism Awards' organised by the Ministry of Tourism and the Sri Lanka Tourism Development Authority.
The grand presentation of the 'Awards' to the winners will take place on the January 26, 2009 at the BMICH.
'Travel and Tourism Awards 2008' has dedicated to those, who have excelled in the development of tourism in Sri Lanka.
Sri Lanka's travel and tourism industry, which is the 4th largest foreign exchange earner, will be presented once again with awards for its exceptional contribution to socio-economic development of the country.
'The objective of this new awards ceremony is to recognize and reward excellence among industry stakeholders of past and present, to encourage and ensure an even greater contribution in the future, for the sustainable development of the tourism industry' said K. A. D. George Michael, Secretary, Ministry of Tourism at a press conference last week.
Nominations and applications for the awards are now open and the closing date for the submission will be October 30. The awards will consist of 11 categories and there are 48 awards with nine merit awards in total to be given away against last years' 47 Awards.
'Winners will be selected by an eminent and distinguished panel of judges based on a comprehensive evaluation criterion. The judges are experts in fields such as quality control, hygiene aspects, financial performance, hospitality, management and marketing with international exposure' Mr. George Michael said.
Like last year, Ministry of Tourism has entrusted this task to veteran Nalin Attygalle, the professional marketer and the former President of the ‘Sri Lanka Institute of Marketing’ (SLIM).
All registered hotels with star classified, tour operators of inbound, outbound and of domestic operations, MICE operators, niche operators, National tourist guides, chauffeur guides , chefs, provincial tourism projects, airlines involved in contribution to tourism, guests houses, home stay and restaurants, tourism education sector and travel related journalist are eligible to apply for the 'Travel and Tourism Awards 2008'.
According to Sri Lanka Tourism, there are 271 registered industry stakeholders listed by them.
‘The Travel and Tourism Industry generates direct and indirect employment to over two million people and contributes over US$ 450 million to the national coffers. The industry plays a significant role in national development and will be recognized and rewarded with these national honours. But we are pleased to say that we are not utilizing any state funds for the project. Everything will be on sponsorships’ explained S. Kalaiselvam, the Director General of the Sri Lanka Tourism Development Authority.
Applications and more information on the awards can also be obtained via the website, www.tourismawards.lk