• Morning clouds seen near the city of Vishakhapatnam in Andhra Pradesh.Wikimedia commons
  • View at Araku Valley, a hill station of Andhra Pradesh.Wikimedia commons
  • Mahavaraya Swamy Temple at Gandikota, Andhra Pradesh.Wikimedia commons
  • Beautifully lit Borra Caves. The caves are located in the Ananthagiri hills of the Araku valley in Andhra Pradesh.Wikimedia commons

Andhra Pradesh is eyeing Rs. 20,000 crore investments in the tourism sector by 2029. The state has taken up multiple initiatives with an aim to become the most preferred destination in the country.

The state had last year witnessed a jump in tourist footfalls to the tune of 30 percent, from 93 million in 2014 to 122 million in 2015, the government said in a statement.

In 2015, Andhra Pradesh witnessed investments worth Rs 12,000 crore in the tourism sector, from 160 projects generating employment for 35,000 people. The state has set a target of Rs. 10, 000 crore in investments by 2020.

The future capital of the state — Amravati — would be integrated through an extensive network of ports, roads, airports and inland waterways aimed at turning the state into a well-connected economic hub.

"The state is working towards creating six tourist hubs: Vishakhapatnam, Rajahmundry-Konaseema-Kakinada; Vijayawada-Amaravati; Tirupati; Ananthapuramu-Puttaparthi and Srisailam. With an investment of Rs. 12,000 crores already tracked, development of a sturdy tourism infrastructure is what will give further fillip to the sector," Neerabh Kumar Prasad, Andhra Pradesh principal secretary of Tourism and Culture, said in the statement.

In addition, the state intends to unlock further value from temple tourism creation of a Buddhist Circuit, which is expected to attract Indian and foreign tourists.

"I strongly believe that Andhra Pradesh tourism sector has a lot of potential for investments and I am confident that it will emerge as one of the biggest growth engines, driving our state's economy, [sic]" YS Chowdary, Union Minister of State for Science and Technology, was quoted as sayign in the statement.

[1 lakh = 100,000 | 1 crore = 10 million | 100 crore = 1 billion]

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