Tourism industry is a tremendous employment generator, yet the industry in India faces the challenge of huge demand-supply gap in skilled manpower. Skill development being the most important segment to create jobs in tourism sector, the top most priority of India Tourism is to bridge the skill gap and create a pool of talented and quality human resource for tourism industry.
The task of skilling and capacity building for tourism sector has so far largely been undertaken by Tourism Ministry, State Governments and Academic Institutions. The setting up of Skill Development Ministry by Union Govt has been a laudable step and the National Skill Development Corporation (NSDC) and Tourism & Hospitality Sector Council (THSC), the two organisations under Skill Ministry are doing commendable job to address the issue of skill gap in tourism sector.
I heartily compliment Gujarat Tourism for bringing the issue of skill development to the centre stage, by organising in New Delhi on 24th Jan. The Think Tank session was one of its kind, in the sense that it brought a trilateral interface among the Government, Industry and Academia.
The ‘think tank’ deliberated on on-ground dynamics, and on designing & implementation of skill development for travel, tourism and hospitality sector. The participants also discussed the road map for improvement of employability in the tourism industry and to bring about a sustainable solution for maintaining the demand-supply balance of skilled human resource in tourism sector. The think tank also observed that:
• The Skill gap in tourism industry is a burning issue and all stakeholders in tourism sector of India should treat it as a National priority.
• There should be greater interface among Union Govt, State Govts, Tourism industry and Academic Institutions, to address the issue of bridging the skill gap and to raise talented and quality service providers.
• With a view to bringing nationwide integration of efforts and greater coordination, Ministry of Tourism should explore the possibility of constituting a National Task Force on Skill Development for Tourism.
• The trend set by Gujarat tourism for bringing greater focus on skill development should be emulated by all State Govts. and
• The Private sector stakeholders must play a more proactive role for producing skilled & talented human resource in tourism sector.
It was a pleasure to address and to be a Moderator at the Think Tank Session.