Male’, Maldives, 31st December 2023 – The Maldives is striving to welcome two million tourists by 2024, with Minister of Tourism Ibrahim Faisal unveiling strategies to strengthen the nation’s tourism sector during an interview on PSM’s ‘Raajje Miadhu’ program.

Minister Faisal emphasized the critical need to intensify efforts in promoting the Maldives as a premier tourist destination. Recognizing traveler hesitancy amid global geopolitical tensions, he stressed the imperative of bolstering the nation’s appeal to potential visitors.

Furthermore, an essential project in progress is the airport expansion initiative. The President aims to complete this project within 8 to 10 months, anticipating the utilization of a new terminal to accommodate up to 5 million tourists. This expansion intends to attract more airlines, benefiting both the tourism industry and citizens.

Expressing unyielding confidence in the Maldives Marketing and Public Relations Corporation (MMPRC) and collaborative endeavors from the Ministry of Tourism, Minister Faisal expressed optimism about surpassing the ambitious milestone of two million tourist arrivals.

Highlighting the surge in global travel trends, Minister Faisal underscored the potential for a significant rise in tourist influx by tailoring personalized marketing strategies for specific countries.

Anticipating reinvigorated relations between the Maldives and China, Faisal highlighted China as the Maldives’ largest pre-pandemic tourism market, aiming for increased tourist arrivals from the region in the forthcoming years.

Following the presidential election, the Visitor’s Economic Council emerged, dedicated solely to enhancing the tourism sector. Led by His Excellency President Dr. Mohamed Muizz and co-chaired by the Tourism and Economic Minister, this council will focus on diversifying tourism offerings in the Maldives.

During the interview, Minister Faisal disclosed ongoing governmental discussions aimed at expediting the development of 63 islands earmarked for tourism purposes and accelerating the development of islands leased for resort ventures. Acknowledging that several islands were leased a decade or more ago and remain undeveloped, he affirmed continued dialogues with investors to address development challenges and hasten resort openings.

Moreover, the ministry is collaborating with the Attorney General to explore avenues for government assistance in resort development, ensuring alignment with pertinent laws and regulations. Faisal aims to bring 50% of the allocated islands to market within a five-year span

Additionally, the government plans to inaugurate 12 to 15 new resorts next year, adding an estimated 1,000 beds to the Maldives’ hospitality sector. Simultaneously, efforts are underway to strengthen international relations and attract further investment.

The recent achievement of hosting 1.8 million tourists this month underscores the Maldives’ resilience and determination to rejuvenate its tourism industry amidst enduring global uncertainties.

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