There are many definitions of sustainable tourism. Terms like voluntourism, ecotourism, geo-tourism, etc., are analogous to sustainable tourism and are interchangeable. Achieving sustainability in tourism requires constant management of impacts, taking required preventions or corrective measures whenever needed. In this report, different approaches to developing the tourism industry of Qatar are elaborated. Along with it, the role of various stakeholders of the tourism industry in developing a plan is discussed. The relationship between the public and private sector in the context of tourism sector has been talked about. Moreover, the report also highlights the different planning stage of the tourism industry of Qatar. In the later section, the tourism development system has been elucidated in here in the context of sustainability.
The aim of providing this leaflet is to make learners aware of the benefits of a planned tourism sector in Qatar to the stakeholders.
Stakeholder’s benefits: Sustainable tourism brings many economic, social, and environmental benefits to the host country. Economic benefits include the increase in returns, employment, and a decrease in poverty. It generates large revenues and contributes significantly to the GDP of Qatar. This revenue can be brought into use for strengthening the existing tourism infrastructure in the region. This would further help in increasing the tourist influx. In addition to this, sustainability planning helps in promoting the existing features of the country that grab the attention of the global tourist. For businesses in Qatar, planning can help in increasing the growth. Sustainability also talks about benefiting the local community. It improves their quality of life by bringing benefits of rising tourism directly to them. It would trigger the development in Qatar.
In this section, a discussion of what role stakeholders play in planning for sustainability was done along with the benefits that they get from sustainable tourism.
Role of Stakeholders:
It is a well-known fact that sustainable tourism cannot be achieved by the government of Qatar all alone. It needs an active participation from all the stakeholders of the tourism sector. The stakeholders comprise the investors, businesses, women, youth, children, indigenous persons, NGOs, local authorities, workers and trade unions, farmers, scientific and technological community. These people are solely responsible for the implementation of sustainable development plans in Qatar. In fact, the role of stakeholders is to define and fulfil the aims and objectives of the tourism plan.
Sustainable tourism talks about the role of private and public stakeholders. This leaflet will talk about the public-private partnership in sustainable tourism. Furthermore, this section will also cover the advantages and disadvantages of having a PPP model in the tourism sector.
PPP model gives more effective solutions for infrastructure.
This partnership can speed up the project and minimise the chances of delay.
The ROI is usually higher than the traditional.
Elements of innovation and financial approach to different project aspects are added in the work.
Operational risks get shifted from government to the private party which is more experienced in dealing with them.
It increases the efficiency of public’s investment as high standards are maintained.
It reduces the overall expense on the project. This reduces the overall tax.
Private parties face higher risks than the public.
Profits from the project are based on the assumed risk.
This becomes expensive when there are only a few private players. These players control the price of the project.
When the expertise lies in the hands of the private parties, it becomes difficult to access the overall cost.
The main idea behind developing this leaflet was to explain the importance of the PPP model in the tourism sector. It also elucidated the disadvantages and advantages of having a PPP model in Qatar.
Public-private partnership Meaning
Basically, a PPP model is more like a funding model that aims at carrying out public infrastructure projects. The public partners include the local authorities or other government bodies, whereas the private partners can be private business organisations with a particular area of expertise. The overall concept of promoting PPP is to pace up the development process in the country. The sustainable development plan consists of a wide range of principles and with PPP, they can be efficiently achieved. In addition to this, this partnership can generate a large number of jobs in Qatar.
This report highlights the approaches employed in the tourism development process. Therefore, a discussion on differentiated features of the development plan is done. In addition to this, the impact of rising tourist influx in Qatar is calculated in here.
While planning for the sustainability in tourism, three concepts are usually taken into account. The first one is economic sustainability that is characterised by an economic system with a focus on current and future needs as well. Many researchers have argued that economic, environmental, and social sustainability are interdependent. That means economic sustainability remains unachievable until social and environmental sustainability is achieved. It is true for the rest of them also. Without social sustainability, there won’t be any equitable distribution of benefits emerging out of the tourism sector among the local communities. Social sustainability often talks about increasing in a number of jobs, improving the infrastructure, quality of life, satisfaction, salary, etc.
The sustainability focuses on different levels in the context of Qatar, such as international, national, regional, and sub-regional. These are elaborated below:
Previously, most of the nations around the world were inclined more towards the conventional planning system. This system follows a predefined path of carrying out development activities as given in the development plan. Many researchers have criticised this approach as they believed it to be irrelevant and perplexing. Interactive planning is more of a participatory planning approach that includes everyone’s participation in the development process. Sometimes it is called collaborative planning also.
The main concept behind the interactive planning is to indulge each and every stakeholder in the development of tourism industry in Qatar. This way the nation can optimise its resources in a better way. The interactive planning checks whether or not all the stakeholders are integrated into developing the tourism sector. This way Qatar can achieve its short-term goals and benefit the locales of Qatar. It controls the over-spending and maximises the potentials of Qatar.
The effects of tourism activities in a region can be different from another region. To measure these effects, there are many methods available that are discussed below in this section.
In this report, the approaches employed in the tourism development process were highlighted. Therefore, a discussion on differentiated features of the development plan was done. In addition to this, the impact of rising tourist influx in Qatar was calculated in here.
This section will talk about the concept of sustainability in the tourism sector of Qatar. For that the triple bottom line theory will be explained. Various factors affecting the sustainability of the tourism sector is also discussed along with the stages of sustainability planning.
Sustainability in tourism is all about fulfilling the current needs without affecting the future tourist’s need. It considers all economic, social, and environmental factors. Different organisations in the world have given their own definition of sustainability.
The TBL approach is used to measure the profit earned by the application of principles of sustainability. The theory is characterised by three dimensions of performance: social, economic, and environmental.
The first bottom line comprises the environmental factors, the second bottom line includes the social factors, and the third bottom line is characterised by the economic factors.
Sustainability in the tourism industry is often affected by various factors, such as Cost, Crime and violence Rate, Health and Safety, Insufficient transportation System, Pollution, Climatic Conditions, Corruption, Child Labour, etc.
There are basically six stages of planning and to achieve the sustainability goals, one needs to achieve sustainability at each stage. Sustainability planning is done to mitigate the effects of present issues while making a proactive approach towards new challenges in future.
There are six stages of sustainability planning. First and the foremost stage is to develop the objectives and set deadlines. The second stage is to understand the varying needs of each stakeholder. The third stage is about evaluating the gathered data and developing the development plan. The fourth stage is about identifying the issues. The fifth stage is provided recommendations for the problems. The last stage involves monitoring and evaluating.
This section covered the concept of sustainability in the travel and tourism industry of Qatar. For this purpose, the Triple Bottom Line Theory was explained in brief. The later section covered the factors that hinder the sustainability process. In addition to this, various stages of sustainability planning were also discussed.
Present Issues Related to Tourism Development Planning
Date: August, 2018
Like any other industry, the travel and tourism sector are also susceptible to many risks and challenges. These may be social, economic, or environmental. Qatar is being accused of funding the terrorism in the region. This has led to grave ramifications as the country has been boycotted by four members of GCC. This article discusses three aspects of the tourism sector. First, methods to resolve conflicts in the industry. Second, implications due to balancing supply and demand. Third, the ethical issues caused by enclave tourism in Qatar.
Methods of resolving a conflict of interests
Tourist sector comprises a wide range of stakeholders as already discussed in section 1 of this report. Many a time it occurs that the interest of stakeholders is contradicting which further becomes a conflict. The government of Qatar is taking measures to bring harmony among them. For that purpose, wide range options are available to resolve the issues:-
Self-regulation: Self-regulation is all about maintaining a prolonged patience and responding passively. It would help in edging away from the heated arguments.
Disclosure: Most effective way of dealing with the conflict is disclosing the interest of stakeholders as this could reduce the chances of occurrence of conflict. It also highlights the reason for conflicts.
Negotiation: This method tries to form a communication link between the conflicting parties and solve the issues outside the court. It uses different Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) approach.
Development of Host-Guest Relationship: If Qatar wants to avoid conflicts in the first place, then nothing could work best than developing a healthy host-guest relationship. This can help in resolving the issues as soon as possible and also promote tourism internationally.
Implications of balancing supply and demand
Tourism demand is a wider concept that incorporates factors governing demand, its spatial characteristics, types, and motive behind it. There can be any definition of demand depending upon the psychological, geographic, economic, and political perspective of a traveler. Tourism demand can be defined as a total number of individuals who desire to travel and make use of tourist facilities and services. Many research studies have identified many issues related to tourist demands. The tourism demand keeps on growing and becoming highly differentiated. In addition to this, understanding of the customer's demand is essential in order to increase the level of satisfaction. On the other hand, supply is characterized by various tangible and intangible services, schemes, offers, products, etc. These demand and supply depend on the nature of a country. In developing nations, the demand and supply are different from that of a developed nation. These are highly influenced by the economic conditions and the stability in the market. The government of Qatar is taking the whole responsibility to cater to the demand and supply of the tourism industry of the country. They are making some rhetoric changes in the tourism policies and making efforts to optimise the use of scarce resources just to keep a right balance between the demand and supply. If these are not attended properly, then they may cause serious ramifications to the tourism sector. It can disrupt the relationship between stakeholders of the tourism industry. In addition to this, this may hinder the future development of the tourism sector.
Moral and ethical issues of enclave tourism in Qatar
Enclave tourism can be defined as a type of tourism that is planned in a remote location of a small geographic region. The idea behind the enclave tourism is to provide the tourists an experience of different culture or religion. Governments of various countries are trying to attract international tourists in their country without having a negative impact on local communities. The concept is being criticised heavily due to the personal benefits of some private parties. The major objective behind developing enclave tourism in the country is to reap big profits while ignoring the local community. Big organisations are spending millions on such projects in order to cater the international clients. These developments are usually located in the remote areas surrounded by the eco-sensitive areas. The local community depends on those areas for their livestock needs and livelihood. To provide the land for such development in those areas, large chunks of forest area are cleared. This affects the local people. In addition to this, enclave tourism forces the government to provide infrastructure in those remote places. It increases an additional burden on the government. Being a developing nation, Qatar cannot bear such a burden. It affects the local businesses as well and barely contributes to the development of the local community.
Right from the beginning to the end of this article, different aspects of the tourism sector were discussed. This included methods to resolve the conflicts, implications of balancing demand and supply in the context of Qatar, and ethical issues with enclave tourism.
According to the World Tourism Organisation, the travel and tourism industry can generate foreign exchange. This can be very beneficial for the host country. Development of tourism can be linked to the development of other infrastructures, such as transportation, entertainment centres, accommodation, etc. In this section, the issues in the tourism sector of emerging destination like Qatar has been compared to the developing country like Bhutan. In addition to this, the recommendations regarding the future development of these two countries are also provided.
According to the Tourism Committee of Qatar, the sector is facing many challenges. This came after the comprehensive study. The country lacks the entertainment venues in the major cities. For instance, there are no water cities or amusement parks. Quality resorts are de facto not there in the country. These factors have contributed prominently to the low occupancy rate. In addition to this, the committee report also highlighted other problems, such as travellers are facing problems in getting travel visas. The process of obtaining a visa is troublesome.
In addition to this, the country is also affected by the unorganised tourism sector. The businesses do not follow any rules or regulations. The hotels are expensive and this affects the tourism influx rate in the country. Weak administration and ineffective government policies to safeguards the rights of the tourism demotivate the tourists to visit Qatar. Furthermore, the country is being accused by the GCC members of promoting terrorism in the region. Therefore, the four Arab countries have boycotted Qatar and this has squeezed the tourism industry of Qatar. Women's safety is another issue in the country that is required to be addressed as soon as possible as it is obstructing the global tourists to visit the country.
Talking about Bhutan, the country has become one of the must-visit destinations in the world. The growth of the tourism sector is greatly affected by many factors. For instance, the geography is one of the largest hindrances. It has only one airport, three international roads to India, and to top it all the land areas are steep. Another challenge that tourists face is high expenses. Tourists have to pay tourist tariff of $200 for food, hotels, and guides. In addition to this, the major problem is the language barrier as this is a non-English speaking country. The country is a developing nation is currently facing infrastructure and public transportation shortage problem at present. The southern part is least developed and therefore, only the western part of the country has become the tourism attraction center. This is demotivating the pro-poor tourism in the country. Government is also not taking serious steps in attending the tourism sector.
Bhutan is a must-visit destination and should be there in everyone' bucket-list. The country is full of potential for the tourism sector. Its cultural values, religious festivals, heritage and monuments, and way of life attract the foreign tourist. The tourism sector came into existence in 1974 with a key motive of generating foreign exchange. The government has imposed a high tariff which turned out to be a successful decision for the development of tourism sector in Bhutan. With the rise in tourist influx in the country, there is a strong need of monitoring and evaluating the cultural and environmental impact of travel and tourism sector.
Recommendations for Bhutan
Qatar has witnessed a major growth in the whole region despite blockade from the Arab countries. This is due to the effective measures taken up by the government of Qatar that have reinforced the tourism sector’s performance. In 2016, a 1000% rise in the cruise passengers was noted. In addition to this, the country is about to host the FIFA World Cup 2022. Therefore, the nation is anticipating a major boom in the tourism influx.
Recommendations for Qatar
This section concluded with a discussion of two aspects. First, it talked about the issues in the tourism sector of emerging destination like Qatar and the developing country like Bhutan. Second, the recommendations regarding the future development of these two countries were enlisted.
Here, the sustainability concept in the tourism sector of an emerging destination like Qatar was elucidated. The report explained the need for sustainability in the tourism sector of Qatar. Achieving sustainability in tourism requires constant management of impacts, taking required preventions or corrective measures whenever needed. In this report, different approaches to developing the tourism industry of Qatar were elaborated. Along with it, the role of various stakeholders of the tourism industry in developing plan was discussed. The relationship between the public and private sector in the context of tourism sector was talked about. Moreover, the report also highlighted the different planning stage of the tourism industry of Qatar. In the later section, the tourism development system was elucidated in here in the context of sustainability.
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