A major step was the Cabinet last week approving the critical five-year global promotion initiative.
“We are now finalising the Terms of Reference and appointment of the Procurement, Project and Technical Evaluation Committees; and will start the process, to be in readiness when the time is right,” Sri Lanka Tourism Chairperson Kimarli Fernando told the Daily Financial Times on Sunday.
She said a traveller-focused, evidence-based promotion strategy will be developed.
“The approach focuses on consumer types and will allow for a research supported global promotional campaign for Sri Lanka,” she added.
With shutting down of borders and widespread social distancing, tourism was the worst affected sector following COVID-19 pandemic which has killed seven people and infected 259 others in the island-nation.
Fernando said Sri Lanka Tourism was also currently working with the UN Development Program (UNDP) in a three-stage strategy of situation assessment, impact assessment and road mapping, to “help get tourism industry back on its feet”.
According to Fernando, the Sri Lanka Tourism’s post COVID-19 approach will take place in two stages – the Stage 1 (December season 2020) and Stage 2 (Post-December 2020).
She said Stage 1 focuses on the immediate recovery of the industry, which involves changes to the visa process to include mandatory testing, adjustments to immigration process, airport entry, hotel transfer and certification of hotels to ensure health and safety of tourists, employees and the local community.