SL needs to catch up on lost time – SLTPB MD IRONMAN 70.3 to bring in 3,000 foreigners

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By 2018-02-14

By Mario Andree

Highlighting the importance of the IRONMAN 70.3 Colombo event scheduled to be held on 25 February, a senior tourism official said that Sri Lanka needed to focus on non-traditional ways to increase tourist arrivals to the country as the country needed to catch up on lost time.

Addressing journalists in Colombo, Sri Lanka Tourism Promotion Bureau (SLTPB) MD, Sutheash Balasubramaniam commenting on the low number of tourists visiting the country, said "Sri Lanka has lost time and the country needs to catch up."
Showering praise on himself for being present at the IRONMAN 70.3 Colombo press conference held at Shangri-La Colombo and referring to the outcome at the Provincial Council Election, he said, "I am here to show support to the event at a time when public officials were napping at home."

The recent election results have rattled the public sector and Members of Parliament due to the number of seats obtained by the Sri Lanka Podujana Peramuna.

Highlighting that Sri Lanka would plan more events like IRONMAN 70.3 Colombo to attract foreign travellers, he invited entertainers and artistes to light up Colombo to showcase the country and its talent.

Sri Lanka during the first month of this year welcomed more than 246,972 visitors to the country. The IRONMAN 70.3 Colombo event so far has attracted more than 3,000 foreign participants and spectators, which will help arrivals for February as well as showcase the country to potential travellers to achieve a higher number of visitors in the future.
Pro Am Serendib Director, Yasas Hewage commenting on the event said that IRONMAN 70.3 Colombo was sold out and 880 athletes, of whom 26 per cent were Sri Lankan, would participate in the Triathlon.
According to him 2,344 foreign travellers, who are family and friends of participants have committed to arrive in Sri Lanka to support the

athletes.
The country is expected to earn more than US$ 3 million from the arrivals for the event alone.
Highlighting that Pro Am Serandib aimed to make IRONMAN 70.3 Colombo an annual event and that the next would be held in 2019, Hewage said that the number of participants was encouraging as it displayed the keen interest of travellers to arrive in Sri Lanka.

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