Pakistan Tourism Development Corporation (PTDC) shows that 1.75 million tourists visited Pakistan in 2017 and 30% of the tourists were domestic. It’s not a good number. Tourism has a positive impact on the development of the country’s economy and has become an important sector in the present era.
If we compare Pakistan with the tourism industry of Thailand the difference is clear. Revenue from tourism directly contributes to the Thai GDP of 12 trillion baht – from one trillion baht in 2013 to 2.53 trillion baht 2016 - the equivalent of 9% to 17.7% of GDP.
Tourism worldwide in 2017 accounted for 10.4% of global GDP and 313 million jobs, or 9.9% of total employments. There are several benefits of tourism and most important are revenue generation and creation of job opportunities. An estimation of yearly global tourists is 694 million per year but if we talk about Pakistan, it receives only 0.5 million tourists per annum which is a very low figure. It is a time to think upon about this very serious issue.
Pakistan Super League (PSL) can bring foreign players into Pakistan and it can open new doors of foreign tourism, along with a boost to the economy and strengthening of international relations as well. Foreign tourism consists of several service activities including communication, transportation, catering, entertainment, hospitality and advertising etc. It all depends upon the quality of services that leads to arrival of more visitors, players and cricket fans. Economic experts called this process sports tourism and emphasize its importance along with an increase in government revenues and promotion of indigenous culture.
The commercial rights to the initial franchises were sold for US$93 million for a span of 10 years in December 2015. The market value of PSL in 2017 was up to US$300 million according to Arif Habib, and has grown significantly in the years since. It is an open fact that Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) was unable to host international cricket in Pakistan since 2009. The financial reliance on India and the extremely complicated politics of the stagnated Indo-Pakistani cricketing relationship and many other factors also affected the tourism of foreign players in Pakistan. PSL was not very successful during initial seasons. But with the passage of time it started getting most of its views through online platforms
In foreign tournaments, the crowd coming to the grounds was relatively less for Pakistani players because not many big names were playing. Another reason is that majority of top players don’t participate in PSL due to non-lucrative payment and safety concerns in Pakistan. With a comparison from previous years, PSL is growing faster day by day among overseas players. If we review short history of PSL; the largest contingent of overseas talent is coming to Pakistan this year in 2020.
PSL has achieved a milestone in the field of cricket in national and international level. Different Pakistani foods attract foreign tourists and fans, while textile industry increases revenue by making shirts, caps and other accessories for cricket lovers, and many local vendors can run their circle by selling these items during these days. Tickets for watching PSL can also generate millions in revenue for the government. Sports events like Cricket are compulsory for economic and cultural progress nationwide. On the day of match our government should give special protocol to match officials and players. Our government should also provide a complete road map for traffic which would not create problem for traffic.
PCB advertises the PSL not only in national level but also an international level as well. It is the responsibility of PCB and all the franchises to advertise PSL properly which brings economic stability in country.
On the other side we should also focus on hockey and football and give proper attention to these games like cricket. Pakistan has a lot of talent so if the government of Pakistan gives proper attention to hockey, we can again become a world and Olympic champion.
If we act upon these policies we can build up image of Pakistan to the front of world. Importance of security and secure atmosphere is necessity for better economic momentum in Pakistan. This is the basic reason people feel insecure that’s why they do not invest their huge project in to our country.