The main objective of the Ministry of Civil Aviation and Tourism is to ensure safe civil aviation by modernization of safety and security systems of the Airports and to increase the contribution of tourism sector to the country’s economy by development of modern and standard tourism facilities. In order to implement Vision- 2021 of present government that is to advance the country to a middle income country by 2021, the Bangladesh Civil Aviation Authority has increased the strength of the existing 10,500 feet runway by overlaying asphalt in the Hazrat Shahjalal International Airport. The restriction imposed on Dhaka-London cargo flight has been lifted as a result of the systematic improvement in safety and sustainable quality control at Hazrat Shahjalal International Airport.
To meet the increasing demand of civil aviation for implementation of sustainable Development Goal (SDG), and to modernize the security system of Bangladesh’s Airports, government has a plan for development of Barisal Airport, Terminal Building at Cox’s Bazar Airport, Construction of Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujib International Airport, Existing Runway Expansion at Osmani International Airport and upgradation of the Saidpur Airport to international Airport. To strengthen the safe and secure aviation system of the airports Primary and Secondary Radar, Explosive Detection System, Dual View Hold Baggage X-ray Scanning Machine, Explosive Trace Detector, Liquid Explosive Detection System, Under Vehicle Scanning System, Flap Barrier, Barrier with RFID Card Reader, Container Anti-Explosive, Access control system etc. have been installed. Two Boeing 737-800 aircraft have been added to the aircraft. On the other hand, Bangladesh Biman Airlines has started Travel Agent Portal, Cargo Spot Automated Cash Receipt, Safety Management System (SMS), RAPID System and has been renewed IOSA and BATC EASA 147 certificates. “A” check of B777-300ER aircraft “C” check of B737-800 aircraft and “A” check of Dash8-Q400 aircraft has been achieved for maintenance aircraft. It has also been planned to make Biman profitable by acquiring ISAGO certification in Ground handling of the aircraft, EASA certification for maintenance and network expansion to Hong Kong, Manchester, Rome, Delhi and New York station.
Through ‘introduced Integration of Automation System of Bangladesh Parjatan Corporation Program’, the head office of the Bangladesh Tourism Corporation and tax-free market has been brought under automation along with own data center, e- tendering, admission through online NHTTI, online booking system in commercial units and Wi-Fi. Bangladesh has been elected vice-chairman of the UNWTO Commission for South Asia (CSA) and OIC Tourism Ministes’ Conferences due to successful communication at the international level. Apart from that Bangladesh has been selected as the chairperson of the ICTM for the year 2018-19 for successful organizing of the 10th Islamic Conference of Tourism Ministers (ICTM) and Dhaka has been chosen as the OIC City of Tourism for the year 2019. In addition, GRS service delivery activities have also been adopted in digital system.
Bangladesh Tourism Corporation (BTC) and Bangladesh Tourism Board are implementing multi-farious development programs in order to increase the tourism industry’s contribution to the economy of Bangladesh and to promote Bangladesh’s tourism prospects in abroad. For the development of tourism infrastructure, Bangladesh Tourism Corporation has implemented Motel and Youth Inn construction project in Kuakata, upward expansion project of Dinajpur Motel, a new tourist motel in Rangamati, construction of new tourism motel instead of the Chittagong motel ‘Saikat’, upgradation of National Hotel and Tourism Training Institute (NHTI), reform and development of sonamasjid tourist motel in Chapainababganj and development of Koakata Buddhist temple. Moreover, various tourist facilities have been introduced in the areas of Kantaji temple, Perki, Chottogram, Durgasagar of Barisal district, places adjacent to Sheikh Hasina bridge in Chapainawabganj district, Sirajganj district, Munshiganj of Shatkirah district and Chapti Haor at Dirai upazila, Sunamganj, Barisal city and Jaflong area By Bangladesh Tourism Corporation (BTC).
As part of the future work plan, from 2017-18 to 2020-21 fiscal year, initiatives have been taken to construct Marine Accurium in Cox’s Bazar, tourism building in Agargaon, international standard tourism center in Cumilla on Dhaka-Chittagong highway, tourism center at KhaliyaJuri and Birishiri, Netrokona, limestone mine of Techerghat, Watch Tower at Kuakata and Rest house with modern facilities have been constructed in Dhaka, Chittagong, Narail, Rajshahi and Khulna. At the same time, tourist circuit will be built encircling Khokasagar in Lakshmipur Sadar and Ramgati Upazila including reconstruction of the suspension bridge of Rangamati for creating the more entertainment facilities. Besides these, the National Tourism Policy-2010, formation of tourist police for the safety of tourists, enactment of Bangladesh Tourist Reservation Area and Special Tourism Zone Act-2010 and its rules, and to publish gazette for reservation of 35,000 acres of land, and formation of Bangladesh tourism board has been done for the development of tourism industry.
On the other hand, engaging local people of tourist attractive area, community based tourism and backwaters tourism have been implemented by introducing handicraft and cottage industries of concerned areas, folk culture, local food, guide training of less educated unemployed youth, and home stay programs for Tourists. Besides, eco-guide training is being provided to ensure the safe travel of tourists by upholding the balance of the environment. In addition, international conferences for promotion of tourism and its marketing are being organized and steps have been under taken to participate in various tourism fairs, seminars and symposium abroad and various international forums such as the United Nations World Tourism Organization (UNWTO), Pacific Asia Travel Association (PATA), World Travel & Tourism Council (WTTC) to promote Bangladesh in various regional and international tourism forums. In this regard, the PATA New Tourism Frontiers Forum-2016 was successfully organized in Cox’s Bazar on 23-25 November, 2016. PATA has given Bangladesh the status of New Frontiers Destination as a result of implementation of advertising and marketing activities abroad by Bangladesh Tourism Board. 29th Joint Meeting of the UNWTO Commission for East Asia and the pacific and the UNWTO Commission for South Asia UNWTO Regional forum on Crisis Communication-2017 was arranged on 15-17 May in Chattrogram. It is to be noted that Bangladesh has made elected Chairman of UNWTO Commission for South Asia (CSA) for the year 2017-19 which has made Bangladesh as an active role playing country in the international level. On the other hand, 10th Islamic Conference of Tourism Ministers (ICTM) was organized on 05-07 February, 2018 Bangladesh has elected new chairperson of the Islamic Conference of Tourism Ministers (ICTM) in Dhaka Declaration of that conference including Dhaka City has been announced as the OIC City of Tourism for the year 2019. In addition, it has been announced to help and support the establishment of “OIC Human Resources Development Center in Tourism and Hospitality” in Bangladesh. If the activities mentioned above are completed, the tourism industry will be able to play a more effective role in the country’s economy.
Major Functions of the Ministry:
Formulation, updating and implementation of laws and policies relating to civil aviation and tourism;
Modernization of airports, coordination of air routes and air services;
Airspace control, civil aviation safety, Aeronautical inspection and licensing of aircraft and pilots;
Increasing capacity of competitiveness and quality of service of the national flag carrier- Biman Bangladesh Airlines;
Signing of contracts regarding Civil Aviation and Tourism with local and international organizations and coordination of those;
Registration and licensing of travel agencies and hotels/ restaurants and renewal and control of those:
Development and marketing of tourism products, conducting research to expand tourism industry, modern management and creation of skilled manpower; and
Establishment, direction and control of tourism sector organizations for overall development of tourism industry.
Strategic Objectives of the Ministry and their Relevance with Women’s Advancement and Rights
Safe and Secure Aviation System: Enormous employment opportunities will be created through increasing the number of airports, increasing the number of flights on domestic and international routes, reopening the unused airports, establishing more international airports and modernizing the existing international airports. These will create employment opportunities for women as well.
Efficient and Competitive Cargo Transport System: Expansion of labor intensive industries will create more employment opportunities. Significant portion of these employees will be women workers. This process will increase employment and economic capability of women which will play important role in the development and empowerment of women.
Expansion of Tourism: Expansion of tourism industries will create more employment which will also increase more employment opportunities for women. Moreover, expansion of community tourism will involve more women in this sector. Through employment and empowerment of women, tourism sector will play direct and indirect role in the women development.
Roles and Responsibilities of the Ministry for Women’s Advancement and Rights: The role of Ministry of Civil Aviation and Tourism is very important to the advancement of the national economy. The prime activities of the ministry are- safe air traffic system in its territory, efficient and cost effective air cargo transportation system, expansion of tourism industry, development of tourist spots and enhancing tourist facilities etc. There are huge scopes of women’s socio-economic development through all these activities. The role of this ministry for women’s advancement and rights are discussed below:
Expansion of Inbound Tourism: The wonderful natural beauty of Bangladesh, world’s longest sea beach, largest mangrove forest, hills, haors, rich and diversified cultural heritage could attract huge number of domestic and foreign tourists. Tourism industry could make remarkable contribution to the national economy if those attractions and natural resources are advertised and marketed properly. Women would easily be grab large share of jobs in tourism industries.
Tourism Related Human Resource Development: With the expansion and flourishing of tourism industry, employment opportunities will also be increased, which will create the opportunities for women. The opportunities of job for women would be created through recruitment of trained women as tourist guides, which will lead to their empowerment. The opportunities of income generating activities of women would be created through training courses for women. This will improve their purchasing power and firmly increase their self confidence in decision making.
5.0 Priority Spending Areas and Benefits for Women’s Advancement
|Serial No.||Priority Spending Areas/Programmes||
Impact on Women Development (direct/indirect)
|Development and modernization of civil aviation related infrastructure:||Various development projects will be implemented to ensure civil aviation, to ensure security at Hazrat Shahjalal International Airport and to provide better services to air passengers. For this reason, this sector has been given the highest priority.|
|Modernisation of existing tourism infrastructure and development of related infrastructures||Identification and development of Bangladesh potential tourism spots, modernization and expansion of tourism spots, construction of world class establishment by encouraging private sector investment, expension of community based tourism.|
Construction of physical infrastructure for tourism under PPPs
|Different projects with establishment of Exclusive Tourist Zone for foreign tourist under PPP model has been taken. Thus private investment as well as foreign investment will increase. Moreover, due to private sector participation, management skills will increase here and foreign investment will be attracted.|
Conducting training for human resource development:
|Steps have been taken for modernization of training modules led by NHTTI for preparing skilled manpower suitable for rendering international standard services in tourism, establishment of new training centre to increase skilled human resources in tourism sector. It has become possible to make skilled human resources by giving training in aviation related subjects.|
6.0 Women’s Share in Ministry’s Total Expenditure
(Taka in Crore)
|Budget 2018-19||Revised 2017-18||Budget 2017-18|
Success in Promoting Women’s Advancement
Source: RCGP database
‘National Hotel and Tourism Training Institute has been imparting training in Tourism, Hotel and Hospitality management with a view to develop skilled human resources. The main topics of these trainings include: Diploma in Hotel Management, Diploma in Tourism Management, Professional Chef Course, Certificate Course in Food and Beverage Production, Services, Bakery and Pastry Production, Travel Agency and Tour Operator and Receptionists. Irrespective of gender, each year 1500-1600participantsreceive training on these courses.
Besides, regular training courses, National Hotel and Tourism Training Institute also organize special training courses for women. As a part of this initiative, 260 women received training in 2017. This has increased the skill of women, which has been creating their employment opportunities.
Besides, aviation related trainings are conducted through Civil Aviation Training Centers. Among those Basic ATC Course, Elementary ATC Course, Aircraft Marshalling Course, CFR AFO Initial Course, Fire Orientation Course, Basic aviation Security Course and Simulator Training are remarkable. This institution provided trainings to 1500 persons through 81 courses irrespective of gender in 2017. Among them, 260 women received training in 2017. As a result, capacity of women has been enhanced and opportunities of employment have been created.
Recommendations for Future Activities
With the expansion of tourism industry, many allied sectors are flourished like handcrafts, small and cottage industries. A large number of women are engaged in these industries. Women have ample opportunities to participate in cultural activities. Initiatives should be scaled up to carry out specific and target oriented activities for women’s development.
Huge opportunities have been created for women in hotel management. Economic development of women can be achieved through different activities under tourism industry. Therefore, specific and target based initiatives should be taken for the development of tourism related activities.
Special training programs for women could be arranged in the areas such as flight cabin crew, hotel and hospitality management, professional tour guides, etc.to create efficient work force. It is important to give special emphasis on English language course for women in order to take advantage of these new opportunities of employment in the tourism industry.
By establishing home stays in village homes for the tourists, social eco-tourism has opened up a new horizon of employment opportunities for women. It has great opportunities in the hills, haors and forest areas. Therefore, new initiatives can be taken in order to increase opportunities in eco-tourism.