PTI ledaer Atif Khan. - A file photo

PESHAWAR The Government of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa has planned to set-up Tourism Authority to tap tourism potential and loan for youth in the province.

It also decided to launch Rs1billion interest-free loan scheme for youth to take full advantage of their skills and abilities in the province in line with policy of Prime Minister Imran Khan.

Muhammad Atif Khan, Senior Minister for Tourism, Sports, Culture, Archaeology, Museum and Youth Affairs said the KP government was working on a plan to set-up the province first-ever tourism authority to regulate affairs of tourism sector through an effective coordination of the government and private sector on modern lines.

The minister said that the proposed authority would have representations of all relevant departments, organizations and private sector. He added the authority will work in line with vision of Prime Minister Imran Khan to open up tourism vistas of KP to the world.

The government will make necessary legislation for setting up of the proposed authority as it will serve as platform to organize and coordinate with all the relevant departments and events in most effective manner at national and international level.

The major focused areas of KP government are to increase revenue and provide jobs opportunities to youth. These objectives can easily be achieved by bolstering tourism in the province, he said.

Atif Khan said work on Malam Jabba Skiing Resort, which was destroyed due to militancy operation in Swat in 2008-09, was in full swing and will be opened for tourists in January next.

In addition to development of existing tourism sites, the government will set-up new tourism sites at Hazara, Chitral, Dir and Swat districts to expend tourism in the province.

The government will bring improvement in the already established tourists sites in hilly areas through building of roads and communication services under different uplift projects.

Camping Pods, an eco-tourism-friendly project of PTI government, were alsoestablished at Thandyani in Abbottabad, Shahikh Badeen in D I Khan, Shahran in Manshera, Bishigram in Swat and Yakhtangi in Shangla that would help expand tourism and reduce load on established tourists resorts in the province, reported APP.