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CARBS Business Review

Role of tourism in the development of sustainable entrepreneurship

Dr. Sarfraz Zaman

05 June, 2023

Role of tourism in the development of sustainable entrepreneurship

Sustainable entrepreneurship can be defined as managing businesses that are environmentally conscious, socially responsible, and economically viable. It aims to balance economic, social, and environmental factors. Tourism can contribute to sustainable entrepreneurship by benefiting all three areas.


Pakistan has great potential for tourism development due to its natural landscapes, cultural heritage, historical landmarks, and dynamic towns. By implementing sustainable practices and utilizing these advantages, Pakistan can establish a thriving tourism industry that benefits the environment, community, and economy. Tourism has the potential to bring significant economic benefits to Pakistan by creating job opportunities, increasing income levels, and promoting economic progress. Sustainable tourism entrepreneurship involves developing business opportunities, encouraging entrepreneurship, and attracting investments. Building tourism infrastructure, promoting local products and services, and supporting responsible tourism practices can help achieve these goals.


Pakistan’s local market for tourism is sustainable because more than 10 million people are directly linked to the industry, including local residents, tourist guides, and individual tourists. Over 5 million tourists visit Pakistan’s northern territories each year, and these tourists are mostly local Pakistanis who visit the area regularly. The Pakistani government has already made efforts to develop resorts for local tourists, such as in the Kaghan valley. However, more attention and government efforts are needed for other tourist resorts, such as SWAT and Kashmir Valleys, where tourists are eager to visit in both summer and winter seasons.


Tourism has the potential to contribute significantly towards the prosperity of Pakistan in multiple ways in which few are given below.


Tourism has the potential to provide jobs for the local community. As the tourism industry expands, there is a greater need for skilled and unskilled labour in a variety of industries, including hospitality, transportation, tour guiding, handicrafts, and small companies. This additional employment can aid in poverty alleviation by providing income-generating opportunities for local populations.


Economic growth can be stimulated by tourism by generating foreign exchange through visitor expenditure. Tourists visiting Pakistan spend money on lodging, food, transportation, souvenirs, and other services, which affects the local economy directly. This infusion of tourism cash has the potential to boost infrastructure, public services, and the country’s general development. Even domestic tourism in Pakistan plays a significant role in generating economic activity and developing the overall tourism sector.


According to the World Travel and Tourism Council, the direct contribution of travel and tourism to Pakistan’s GDP in 2016 was Rs. 793 billion (equivalent to Rs. 4.0 trillion or US$14 billion in 2021), constituting 2.7% of the total GDP. By 2025, the government predicts tourism will contribute Rs. 1 trillion (US$3.5 billion) to the Pakistani economy.


Infrastructure development is critical in the development of tourism. To improve the tourism experience, investments in transportation networks, roads, airports, hotels, resorts, and recreational facilities are required. Infrastructure development benefits not only tourists but also local communities’ quality of life. Overall standard of living is developed in the areas where infrastructure is available for the tourists.


Tourism has the ability to improve Pakistan’s undeveloped and isolated regions. Many of these regions have undiscovered natural and cultural resources that may entice tourists. By boosting tourism in these areas, infrastructural development and investment are likely to follow, resulting in higher living standards for the locals.


According to Pakistan Tourism development Corporation PTDC more than one million tourists visited northern areas of Pakistan this season Growth of 25% witnessed during current season, says official August 05, 2016. The number has increased from one million to 5 million in 2022.


Tourism can encourage the preservation and protection of cultural heritage places. The proceeds from tourism can be used to restore and maintain historical monuments, archaeological sites, and cultural landmarks. This not only contributes to the preservation of the nation’s legacy but also generates chances for tourism-related enterprises and jobs.


By incorporating local communities in tourism-related activities, tourism can empower them. Community-based tourism programmes can enable local communities to actively participate in tourist development, promote their culture and traditions, and directly benefit from tourism earnings. This might result in enhanced socioeconomic empowerment and a sense of belonging among the local populace.


By presenting Pakistan’s natural beauty, cultural diversity, and friendly hospitality, a successful tourist industry may assist improve the country’s international image. Positive opinions of the country can lead to an increase in tourism, foreign investments, and collaborations, resulting in additional economic growth and development.


It is important to note that the successful development of tourism requires strategic planning, investment, infrastructure development, sustainable practices, and effective marketing campaigns. Pakistan’s tourism industry has witnessed significant growth in recent years, and with the concerted efforts of the government, it has the potential to become a top industry in terms of economic growth and development.


To fully realise tourism’s potential for sustainable entrepreneurship, good governance, infrastructure development, and stakeholder participation are required. Public-private partnerships, sustainable tourism legislation, and capacity-building efforts can help Pakistan’s tourism sector flourish while also assuring environmental protection, social development, and economic prosperity.

Dr. Sarfraz Zaman

Dr. Sarfraz Zaman

Dr. Sarfraz Zaman is working as an assistant professor in Chaudhary Abdul Rahman Business School. He earned his PhD degree from University of Lahore. He is active researcher with numerous publications in international journals.

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Please note that all opinions, views, statements, and facts conveyed in the article are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent the official policy or position of Chaudhry Abdul Rehman Business School (CARBS). CARBS assumes no liability or responsibility for any errors or omissions in the content. When interpreting and applying the information provided in the article, readers are advised to use their own discretion and judgement.

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