BANGKOK, Thailand – Mr. João Manuel Costa Antunes, in his capacity as PATA Chairman, held dialogue with India’s tourism industry leaders in New Delhi, August 28. It was the Chairman’s first official PATA visit since becoming Chairman in April. Chairman Antunes, also the Director of the Macau Government Tourist Office (MGTO), visited the Cabinet Minister of Tourism of India, Shri Subodh Kant Sahai, and the Secretary of Ministry of Tourism, Sh. Rajen Habib Khwaja, to express gratitude for the strong support rendered by the Ministry of Tourism, and to explore opportunities for closer cooperation in line with “PATA Next Gen” principles.
Antunes also took the opportunity to meet with the Chinese Ambassador to India, HE Zhang Yan, and the Director General of Civil Aviation of India, Mr. Arun Mishra, to promote the aligned advocacy of the Association.
The Executive Committee of PATA India Chapter organized a welcome banquet in honor of the Chairman at the Le Méridien, New Delhi. Secretary of Tourism of India Sh. Rajen Habib Khwaja, who is also the Chairman of the India Chapter, together with the Vice Chairman Mr. Vikram Madhok, welcomed Antunes to India at the dinner.
In the Chairman’s speech, Antunes recognized the vital role of the India Chapter, which was formed in 1974, as one of PATA’s oldest and largest chapters. “Now with more than 200 members from all sectors of the travel and tourism industry, it has successfully established itself as a leader, advocate, and a catalyst for the responsible development of the Indian travel and tourism industry,” said Antunes.
Riding on the strong foundation the Chapter has created, the PATA Chairman said that it should be a priority in India and throughout PATA to cultivate new blood to sustain the industry and embrace Next Gen initiatives.
Former Chairmen of the Association, Mr. Inder Sharma, Mr. Madan P. Bezbaruah and Mr. Ram Kohli, also attended the event.
PHOTO (L to R): Minister of Tourism of India, Shri Subodh Kant Sahai; PATA Chairman Mr. João Manuel Costa Antunes; and PATA India Chapter Honorary Secretary Mr. Sanjeet