•      Tue Sep 27 2022

Tourism entrepreneurs demand favourable conditions for rafting

Rafting in Nepali rivers. (file photo)

KATHMANDU: Increasing river pollution and haphazard mining have posed a threat to white water rafting in Nepal, said tourism entrepreneurs.

Participants of the 33rd AGM of Nepal Association of Rafting Agencies ( NARA) here in Kathmandu on Wednesday expressed concerns over an increasing threat to the rafting business.

Director General of Department of Tourism, Taranath Adhikari said they were working seriously to address issues in the entire tourism sector. “Tourism entrepreneurs are primarily responsible for exploring ways to deal with the existing problems in the business and the Department is ready to collaborate with them towards that end.”

Nepal Tourism Board vice chair Chandra Prasad Rijal talked about the potentially of expansion of rafting business in Nepal, admitting the role of government for protection rivers and streams in the country.

Chairman of Nepal Association of Tours and Travels Agents ( NATTA ) Ramesh Thapa said rafting had its contribution to the promotion of Nepal’s adventurous tourism, but the business now faced a challenge for its sustainability while Trekking Agencies Association of Nepal ( TAAN) chair Khum Bahadur Subedi spoke the need of collaboration and cooperation among tourism entrepreneurs for recovery of tourism industry largely affected by COVID-19 pandemic.

National Tourism Entrepreneurs Association of Nepal chair Deepak Mahat and Nepal Tourism Entrepreneurs Organisation chair Nawaraj Dahal said that the construction of hydropower projects in the areas having potentiality for rafting business had its adverse effects on the industry.

NARA chair Ganga Prasad Nepal, vice chair Mekh Bahadur Ale and general secretary Shishir Khanal drew the attention of the government to rescinding its decision to increase the amount of authorised capital required for registering a rafting company from Rs 500 thousands to Rs 5 million. The AGM will elect a new leadership for the Association, it is said.