Tourism Current Affairs - 2020

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Henley Passport Index launched

Recently, Henley Passport Index was launched. The index was launched based on the data collected from International Air Transport Association (IATA). Around 199 different passports and 227 different travel destinations were considered to launch the index.

The Index is based on the number of destinations their holders can access without visa.

Highlights

According to the index, Japan has the world’s strongest passport. Japan has been holding top rank position for the past 3 years. According to 2020 index, the citizens can access 191 destinations without the necessity of obtaining visa in advance.

Japan was followed by Singapore, Germany, South Korea at second, third and fourth places respectively. US and UK have been falling places for two year are now in eighth position.

India ranked closer to the bottom at rank 84.

History of performances

UAE was the historic performer of Henley Passport Index 2020. UAE has jumped 47 places in the past 10 years. It is currently at 47th position.

India was in Rank 71 as the index was released in 2006. Today Indian citizens can access only 60 destinations in the world without obtaining prior Visa.

Visa Free Destinations

There are 58 destinations in the world that does not require prior Visa. 20 of the 58 are in Africa, 11 in Asia.

There is no developed country or a major power in the world where Indians can travel without Visa. Serbia is the only European country where Indians are allowed to travel without visa.

What is Passport Index?

Passport index is an online tool that provides insights about visa-free travel option. The score also says how welcoming the countries are. The Passport index includes Visa-Frees score, World Openness score, Welcoming score and Global Mobility score. When these scores are high, passport index is also high and such a passport is said to be highly powerful.

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GoI: 6th Island Development Agency meeting held in New Delhi

On January 13, 2020, Home Minister Amit Shah chaired the sixth Island Development Agency meeting in New Delhi. The meeting focused on “Green Development in the Islands to reach new heights”

Highlights

The meeting reviewed the work progress of the programme, “Holistic Development of Islands”. The Island Development Agency (IDA) has taken up scientifically assessed sustainable development goals in order to improve growth of the Islands. This is the first time such an initiative is being implemented. The scientific plans of development include creation of jobs through tourism, increasing export of sea food, increasing coconut-based products produced in the Islands. The plan is to be implemented in four islands of Andaman and Nicobar Islands and five islands of Lakshadweep Islands.

In the second phase 12 more islands of Andaman and Nicobar Islands and 5 Islands of Lakshadweep islands are to be covered.

Connectivity plans

It was also decided in the meeting that infrastructure projects to improve sea and air connectivity with the islands are to be implemented. Also, the city of Port Blair and other 7 islands of Andaman and Nicobar Islands are to be digitally connected through submarine optical fibre cable by June 2020.

LANIDS

It was also decided in the meeting that, under the Lakshadweep and Andaman and Nicobar Islands Industrial Development Scheme, Information Technology based micro, small and medium enterprises are to be set up.

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